Answers to your FAQs

About Expert Physio: Eight Rinks and Burnaby Heights

Why see one of our Physiotherapists?

Why see our Certified Hand Therapist ?

The first question is: why see a hand Therapist at all?

Hands are wonderful, complex things. We rely on them in many ways, and some of us make our living with them. When hands present problems, they need specialized care and attention from expertly-trained professionals. So if you have any hand concerns or problems, a properly certified and trained Hand Therapist is a good choice for treatment.

That leads to the second question, which is: why see OUR hand Therapist?

Simply stated, Joanne Smith is one of the most experienced and sought-after Hand Therapists in the Lower Mainland. As one of the very first to be granted certification by the American Hand Therapy Association, Joanne has become the Hand Therapist of choice for referrals by many of the leading doctors and surgeons in the Lower Mainland. She treats every patient as an individual person with specific needs, and customizes her treatment to suit a person’s unique occupational and daily tasks. She pays great attention to detail, making sure that the splints she creates are comfortable, durable and aesthetically pleasing.

What do the initials listed at the end of my Therapist’s name mean?

  • Acupuncture: CAFCI : Certificate of the Acupuncture Foundation of Canada Institute
  • CHT: Certified Hand Therapist
  • BA: Bachelor of Arts
  • BHK: Bachelor of Human Kinetics
  • BSc: Bachelor of Science
  • BScHonsSpMed: Bachelor of Science, Honours Sports Medicine
  • BScOT: Bachelor of Science Occupational Therapy
  • BScPT: Bachelor of Science Physical Therapy
  • BScR: Bachelor of Science Research
  • DipPT: Diploma of Physical Therapy
  • FCAMT: Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Manipulative Therapists
  • IMS: CGIMS: Intramuscular Stimulation: Certificate of Gunn Intramuscular Stimulation
  • MCPA: Member of the Canadian Physiotherapy Association
  • MCSP: Member of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy
  • MPT: Masters of Physical Therapy
  • MScPT: Masters of Science Physical Therapy
  • OT(C): Member of the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists
  • SPC Cert: Sport Physiotherapy Canada Certificate

What does the FCAMT qualification listed at the end of my Physiotherapist’s credentials mean?

Physiotherapists who are Fellows of the Canadian Academy of Manipulative Therapists (FCAMT) have completed extensive postgraduate education in orthopaedics and have achieved internationally-recognized qualifications in hands-on manual and manipulative therapy. Physiotherapists with the FCAMT designation are committed to providing the highest level of quality patient-centred care combining clinical experience with evidence-based practice. You can learn more at

Your visit and treatment

Is a doctor’s referral required for treatment?

No, Physiotherapists are primary health care professionals (just like doctors and dentists), meaning you can go directly to a Physiotherapist. You do not require a doctor’s referral to see a Physiotherapist. Insurance companies, however, sometimes require a doctor’s referral before they will reimburse cost.

What should I wear to my appointment?

Wear comfortable clothes and shoes that you can exercise in – including shorts if you have a lower-body injury and a t-shirt or tank top if you have an upper-body injury. You can also change into our gowns and shorts.

How long will my first appointment be?

In order for us to thoroughly assess your injury and physical condition, please allow up to one hour for your first appointment. Please arrive 15 minutes before your appointment time so that you can fill in some information forms.

What if I need to cancel or reschedule an appointment?

Extenuating circumstances and emergencies aside, we require 24 hours notice for cancellation or a fee will be applied ($30, $50, or $100, depending on the length of appointment you have booked).

Where are your clinics located and where do I park?

Billing and payment

How much will it cost?

Will my medical plan cover the cost of Physiotherapy treatment?

Many extended medical plans cover the some or all of the costs of Physiotherapy treatment. Check with your service provider.

Will my medical plan cover the cost of Hand Therapy treatment?

Our Hand Therapist, Joanne Smith, CHT, is an Occupational Therapist and Certified Hand Therapist. As extended medical plans offer different levels of coverage, you should ask your insurance company if it pays for hand therapy from an Occupational Therapist, as well as what percentage they will pay for custom splinting. Some insurance companies will only cover hand therapy if performed by a Physical Therapist, so it is good to know your coverage ahead of time to make informed decisions.

Will my medical plan cover the cost of custom foot orthotics?

Our custom foot orthotic specialist is Lisa Price, who works at our 8 Rinks Clinic. She does all the evaluation, foot casting, prescription and dispensing of custom foot orthotics. If you would like to know if this expense is covered by your medical plan, please ask your insurance company these questions:

  • Do I need a doctor's prescription for my custom foot orthotics to be covered? If the answer is yes, please obtain a prescription before you visit our clinic.
  • Does my coverage allow Physiotherapists to prescribe and dispense custom foot orthotics?

A limited number of plans do not allow a Physiotherapist to prescribe and dispense custom foot orthotics, so you will want to know this information beforehand.

Will my medical plan cover the cost of acupuncture treatment?

Acupuncture provided by a Physiotherapist must be billed as a Physiotherapy visit. It cannot be submitted under your acupuncturist coverage unless your Physiotherapist is also a licensed acupuncturist.

What happens if I miss an appointment?

Extenuating circumstances and emergencies aside, a no-show fee will be applied ($35, $55, or $100 depending on the length of appointment booked).