Information for Service Providers


Our Response

Information for Workers

Information for Employers 

Information for Service Providers

Health services treatments during the COVID-19 pandemic 

Like many of you, WCB Nova Scotia has been responding and adapting to COVID-19, and what it means for delivery of services, and we are committed to continuing to deliver service during these challenging times.

While case conferences, visits from WCB representatives, and other such in-person services have been postponed, it’s very important to note that our operations continue, simply being delivered remotely. We understand our service provider partners share our desire to continue to support workers and employers in recovery and return-to-work, and we appreciate your efforts and collaboration.

Our expectation is that approved health care providers will adhere to provincial and national directives, privacy, safety, and discipline-specific standards, which are outlined by respective governing professional bodies in the delivery of service.

The following questions and answers are intended to provide guidance and direction during the COVID-19 pandemic, and will change as the situation evolves.  

Q&A for Service Providers

Can service providers offer teleconferencing or video conferencing services to workers?

WCB Nova Scotia is supportive of remote service delivery during COVID-19 pandemic, where:

  • it is aligned with the treatment program approved by the Case Worker;
  • it adheres to professional standards of the provider's governing body, such as safety, ethics, confidentiality, privacy, etc;
  • there is no recording made of the call or conference;
  • there is no storage or record of personally identifying information (name, SIN, or health details for example) or upload of documents in the conferencing tool; 
  • Canadian privacy and hosting parameters are strictly followed; and
  • the participants consent is obtained, and they are able to safely do so, logistically.

As usual, any treatment plan to promote recovery and return-to-work requires Case Worker approval. Please contact the Case Worker to discuss alternate, remote delivery options, such as telehealth.

WCB is unable to validate each provider's chosen conferencing tool or security configuration. Ultimately, the service provider is accountable to ensure they meet the professional standards of telehealth service delivery, as outlined by their respective governing body. WCB retains the ability to adjust approval of methods of service delivery ongoing, and any changes will be communicated.

If I close my tiered clinic and provide workers with a home exercise program, what do I need to do?

If you are closing, please send a secure message to the Case Worker for each worker, informing them of the closure of the clinic.  

If a service provider location closes, can a worker choose another location that is still open? 

The service provider should contact the Case Worker to discuss alternate location options or treatment methods to ensure the appropriate services can continue, and to get approval.

Are reports and other supporting documentation still required?

If you are treating a worker either in-person or remotely, yes, reports and other documentation supporting treatment and return-to-work planning are still required. This in in accordance with the terms of existing contracts, and other WCB communication regarding service delivery during the pandemic, to support ongoing case management.

WCB Nova Scotia services continue, simply delivered by distance where possible. Case Workers are available remotely and are continuing to support workers and employers. 

How will invoices be paid during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Invoice payments are being processed, so please submit them as usual. Our services continue, simply delivered by distance where possible. Service Providers can continue to mail or fax invoices for payment, however for privacy reasons, do not e-mail invoices.

We know that recent changes to our system, combined with the COVID-19 pandemic, are causing some delays in payment processing, and we continue to address those.

Can service providers bill for extra fees for delivering alternate methods of service and treatment?

Any service approval is always in the context of the Case Worker’s approval of a treatment and recovery plan.

These are unprecedented times and there are new public health requirements which need to be adhered to for safety reasons in-clinic. At this time, WCB is not reviewing fee schedules, and existing standard rates will apply, provided the service offered meets the goals of the approved treatment program and is within the existing contract terms. 

The service provider will assume financial responsibility for additional costs to set up alternate treatment delivery methods and these costs cannot be transferred to WCB, workers, or employers.

If services are able to be offered remotely, they must follow the criteria above, be within treatment plan promoting recovery and return-to-work, and have the approval of the Case Worker.

We will continue to monitor the progression of COVID-19, and we will change our approach as required. WCB Nova Scotia maintains the ability to adjust rates ongoing, and any changes will be communicated. 

Will workers still receive benefits if they choose not to attend treatment, including telehealth treatment?

It’s important that workers continue to participate in treatment, where possible, to promote recovery and return to work. Therefore, benefits should not be impacted. Individual circumstances should be discussed with the Case Worker.  

How often should case conferences occur with tiered service providers during the COVID-19 pandemic?

If case conferences are needed, tiered service providers should continue to liaise with the Case Workers to discuss appropriateness, frequency, methods (such as teleconferencing or video conferencing), and to obtain pre-approval.

In these unprecedented circumstances, contract provisions surrounding treatment timelines will be considered. Extensions to treatment programs are always with the approval with the Case Worker.

What impact do new measures announced have on WCB service providers? 

WCB expects service providers follow the directives of the provinces public health officials  regarding regulated health professionals.

It’s important to note that the directives do provide for in-clinic and virtual care in non-urgent or non-emergency situations when it is within the scope of practice established by a service provider’s governing body. Service providers should also adhere to measures from public health officials, the relevant governing body, as well as existing contract terms with WCB.

If you are able to offer virtual care to workers, please contact the Case Worker for approval. Services that cannot be offered remotely are not approved by WCB, nor are the associated reports as these are only required if services are delivered.