Physiotherapy services

Last updated: 
4 September 2019

What are physiotherapy services

Physiotherapy aims to reduce pain and stiffness, increase mobility and prevent further injury.

Who can receive it

You may be able to receive physiotherapy services if you have an assessed clinical need and a:

What you can receive

Physiotherapists can provide a range of treatments and equipment including:

  • exercise programs to improve movement and control
  • airway clearance techniques that help to decrease lung infections and improve lung function
  • soft tissue massage to improve range of motion, joint flexibility and relieve pain
  • dry needling that can provide pain relief and restore movement
  • water therapy conducted in a heated pool
  • aids and appliances

From 1 October 2019, referrals to this service will be under the Allied Health Services treatment cycle. This means that a referral will last for up to 12 sessions or 1 year, whichever ends first.

These treatment cycles place you at the centre of your care and the general practitioner (GP) as your care coordinator.

There are no limits to the number of treatment cycles you can have.

You can also have:

  • a separate treatment cycle for each allied health service you need; and
  • treatment cycles for different allied health services at the same time

The treatment cycle does not apply to physiotherapy and exercise physiology services for clients who have a Totally and Permanent Incapacitated (TPI) Gold Card. Exercise physiology or physiotherapy services for TPI clients must still be clinically necessary, evidence based and goals oriented. The treatment cycle will apply to TPI clients for referrals to all other allied health services.

How you access

You can get a referral for physiotherapy from a:

  • general practitioner (GP)
  • medical specialist
  • treating doctor in hospital
  • hospital discharge planner

Once the physiotherapist has received your referral, they will:

  • confirm you are eligible for services
  • assess your clinical needs
  • discuss a treatment plan with you

Things you should know

  • We cannot pay for physiotherapy services which are not provided by a DVA service provider. DVA service providers are registered through the Department of Human Services and have an agreement to treat DVA cardholders through special payment arrangements.
  • We do not pay for gym memberships or general exercise programs under Gold Card or White Card arrangements.
  • Do not pay your physiotherapist directly. We will pay for the services provided on your behalf.

What to tell us

You should tell us if you:

  • receive a bill for physiotherapy services
  • have stopped or closed a rehabilitation plan