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24.4.3 Assistance to transition to new treatment arrangements

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Last amended: 17 April 2013

Where a client is seeking massage therapy for the first time or a client is seeking an extension of their long-term massage therapy services, and their GP/specialist is supportive of alternative treatment with a focus on self management, the client will be offered assistance to transition to new treatment arrangements with the support of a DVA Injury Management Adviser (IMA).

The IMA may in certain cases initiate a physical rehabilitation program through an approved rehabilitation service provider with the necessary skills in physical rehabilitation to manage the goals of assisting the client to develop strategies to self manage their condition. The rehabilitation service provider will be expected to provide monthly progress reports on the client's progress in meeting the return to health goals identified in their program.

Such a program could include any one or combinations of the following:

  • physiotherapy;
  • occupational therapy;
  • exercise physiology;
  • a gymnasium-pool membership ;
  • hydrotherapy – aquatic physiotherapy;
  • a home based exercise program; and
  • injury management counselling, if assessed as being appropriate.

Delegates must refer to the current policy guidelines in chapter 5.4 of the Rehabilitation Guide when considering gymnasium-pool memberships and home based exercise programs for clients.

In circumstances where it is identified that alternate self managed treatment arrangements cannot be arranged in a timely manner, an existing client may be granted an interim extension of their massage therapy services.  However, the extension can only be provided after the delegate has discussed the matter with the client, an IMA, the client's GP or treating specialist and any service providers involved in organising an appropriate assessment and transitioning arrangement.

The delegate should ensure that the client is made aware of the fact that the approval is deemed to be exceptional and lies outside the current guidelines and ongoing monitoring is to follow to regularly assess when it would be appropriate to transition the client from their existing provider arrangements to an alternate self managed treatment arrangement.