A current provincial subsidy for chiropractic services is being frozen for two years before rising in increments to $12.70 per patient visit — from the current $12.10 — in 2019.

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A current provincial subsidy for chiropractic services is being frozen for two years before rising in increments to $12.70 per patient visit — from the current $12.10 — in 2019.

The Manitoba government and the province’s chiropractors had refused to release financial details of a five-year contract they signed several months ago.

However, earlier this month, the government quietly amended a regulation that sets out the new fee subsidy structure.

Manitoba is the only province that subsidizes chiropractic visits — up to a dozen per year — for all residents.

Under their arrangement with province, chiropractors bill Manitoba Health for $12.10 per visit, with the remainder of the fee covered by the client. In the past, the subsidy has covered about 25 per cent of the cost of most visits.

The Selinger government has budgeted just over $11 million for chiropractic services this year.

Beginning on April 1, 2017, the subsidy will increase to $12.30 per visit, climbing to $12.50 on April 1, 2018 and $12.70 in April of 2019.

Chiropractors practising in northern Manitoba will see the subsidy increase incrementally to $13.95 in 2019 from the current $13.30.

Limited subsidies in other provinces

Some provinces, such as Saskatchewan and Alberta, only subsidize chiropractic services for certain segments of the population.

Alberta offers limited coverage for seniors. The benefit is up to $25 per visit to a maximum of $200 a year. Saskatchewan subsidizes chiropractic services for seniors and some individuals with low incomes.

The Selinger government’s refusal earlier this year to divulge contract details with the province’s chiropractors didn’t sit well with groups such as the Canadian Taxpayers Association.

"We can’t see any reason to withhold this information from the public," Todd MacKay, the CTF’s Prairie director, said this spring. "The public has a right to know how our tax dollars are being spent..."

Larry Kusch

Larry Kusch
Legislature reporter

Larry Kusch didn’t know what he wanted to do with his life until he attended a high school newspaper editor’s workshop in Regina in the summer of 1969 and listened to a university student speak glowingly about the journalism program at Carleton University in Ottawa.