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Nov. 16, 2020 - Upcoming Paramedical Services Benefits Improvement

Employers are reminded that, as of April 1, 2021, an important paramedical service benefit improvement will be implemented.

In negotiations leading to the 2019–2022 sectoral collective agreements, the parties had some funding remaining within the Sustainable Negotiations Mandate. In negotiations, priorities for the allocation of these monies were agreed upon, subject to final costings of the priority benefits within available funding. The top 3 priorities were:

  • Removing the $10/visit reimbursement cap for paramedical services under the Extended Health Care Plan, effective April, 1, 2021;
  • Reviewing other enhancements to paramedical services and the Extended Health Care plan, no later than April 1, 2021; and
  • Labour Adjustment Education Fund and funding for health and safety and violence prevention training;

In early 2020, the parties formalized the adoption and details of the improvements, signing this agreement.

As a result, the maximum benefit claimable by employees of $10/visit for paramedical services (payable at 80% or $8/visit) will be removed from the Extended Health Care Plan as of April 1, 2021. This applies to the following paramedical services: chiropractors, massage therapists, naturopathic physicians, physiotherapists, and podiatrists, up to $500 per person per calendar year (payable at 80% of the claims limits). Under the agreement, the annual limit for physiotherapist services was increased to $700 as of April 2020. Also, hearing aid coverage was increased effective February 1, 2020 for both adults and children to $1500 every 48 months for adults and $1500 every 12 months for children. Reimbursement for hearing aids is at 100%.

All of these cost increases have been confirmed as falling within the negotiating mandate, and CSSEA expects that employers’ funding will be adjusted accordingly for both the 2020 and 2021 fiscal years to support the improvements.
Our collective agreement benefit plans’ paramedical coverage are subject to what is called “reasonable and customary” limits. A sample of reasonable and customary limits broken down by paramedical service can also be found here.
Employers are encouraged to share these details with their employees. If you have any questions, please contact your HRLR Consultant/Advocate.

Communications Contact

Doris Sun
Director of Communications
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