OSOT Seeks to Establish new WSIB Sector Team to advance OT in the WSIB System

OSOT has had longstanding relationship with the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB)’s health care programs. In 1999, as the Board contemplated new service delivery models for rehabilitation of injured workers through Programs of Care, an advisory Health Professionals Forum was established. OSOT has been a member of the Forum since its inception. However, the WSIB delivers services in a wide variety of models of care and OSOT is committed to support members' practice and the advancement of their practice across in all programs in which they serve clients with work-related injuries or illnesses.

Recently, the WSIB has announced the restructuring of advisory components to their health care programs. While representation of health professions will continue to exist in new structures, the Board will be dis-engaging a formal relationship to the Health Professionals Forum with the hope that the Forum will continue to exist as a coalition of health professional associations of those professions engaged in the health care services provided for individuals who sustain work-related injuries or illnesses.

Associations representing health professions engaged in WSIB health care programs have unanimously agreed to maintain a WSIB Health Professionals Forum. Draft Terms of Reference are emerging to enable a focus on the following mandates;

  • Discuss matters of interest and relevance to its members pertaining to the provision of, remuneration for and policies and procedures applying to health care services provided to WSIB worker claimants; 
  • Make submissions to, request information from and otherwise communicate with the WSIB pertaining to the provision of, remuneration for and policies and procedures applying to health care services provided to WSIB worker claimants for consideration by the WSIB’s health care programs advisory body (to be established), or by the WSIB itself;
  • Establish criteria for individuals to be nominated by the Forum to serve on the WSIB Health Care Advisory body which will be established and to forward nominations 

Why do we need an OSOT WSIB Team?

Occupational therapists have meaningful and important roles to play in the rehabilitation of persons with work-related injuries or illnesses. OTs are engaged across the wide range of WSIB health care programs. OSOT is committed to continued representation and promotion of the profession in the WSIB system. The Health Professional Forum will continue to provide a useful mechanism through which to identify and discuss issues, develop recommendations and proposals for the WSIB’s consideration, however, this will not be the only means through which OSOT and occupational therapists can advance the profession’s contribution to WSIB’s mandate.

To support OSOT’s ongoing membership in the Health Professionals Forum and its continued advocacy for access to OT services that can best meet the needs of WSIB claimants, OSOT seeks to establish a WSIB Team to assists the Society to monitor, identify and address issues affecting occupational therapy practice in the WSIB system across Ontario. This will help to ensure that an occupational therapy voice is able to effectively influence relevant policy development, to facilitate proactive promotion of the profession to the WSIB and to ensure that the needs of occupational therapists working in the WSIB system are met to enable OTs to deliver quality services to meet the needs of Ontarians.

Interested? Please contact Christie Brenchley to discuss this further.