To see a Chriopodist or Podiatrist you do not need a doctor's referral. However, you do need a referral from your family doctor to see an Orthopaedic surgeon.
Yes, we are not an urgent care centre, so you need to call or come in to book an appointment in advance to be seen by any of our clinicians.
No, we are a private clinic so our services are not covered by OHIP.
Generally our orthotics last betwen 1 1/2 and 2 years, however the life of your orthotics will vary depending on your lifestyle, considering factors such as your profession (if you work at a desk job or are on your feet all day), and activity level (if you are a runner/avid gym-goer they may wear out more quickly).
The prices of our orthotics can vary depending on your insurance plan and prescription of your orthotics. As well as the fact that our orthotics our priced very fairly, at a rate that is seen across the board, all other services related to your orthotics at our clinic are free. This applies to services such as orthotic repair, follow-up appointmnets, etc.
Many clinics offer an incentive to a patient to utilize their orthotic coverage in the form of 'a free shoe with every orthotic purchased' deal, or a incentive such as a large discount on a shoe or a free shoe coupon/gift certificate to a nearby shoe store etc. This practice is disallowed by insurance companies and the governing medical colleges of our Podiatrists, Chiropodists and Pedorthists because this practice leads to an increase in benefit costs as people may bring their whole family in to get free shoes via their orthotic coverage. They may get a new orthotic just to get the free shoe year after year (depending on the insurance plan's orthotic frequency). The patient often does not even use the orthotic nor is it even medically necessary. This growing population of people getting orthotics (who otherwise would have no reason to) costs employers millions annually by raising premiums and eventfully leads to benefits being cut due to this abuse. Insurers are regularly auditing claims investigating to see if incentives have been used, offending claims are being denied or whole clinics are being delisted (banned) by the insurer. The Hamilton Foot Clinic proudly adheres to all rules, regulations and ethical standards.
Insurance providers typically only cover custom made foot orthotics. A custom made device needs to be made from a 3D scan or physical mould of the foot to make the shell of the orthotic, it needs to be made from scratch using raw materials while following a strict manufacturing guideline. Many clinics employ a 3rd party orthotic laboratory to manufacture their orthotics, however in practice these labs often utilize a library system of hundreds of pre-made and ready to go orthotic shells and they pick a 'best fit' based on foot shape and shoe size which is only roughly determined by the 3D scan or physical mould supplied. But these are still advertised and billed as a custom made orthotic. These library system orthotics are medically not as effective a truly custom made orthotic, the patient may not reach the desired outcome and may end up utilizing further treatments in the form of short term disability, other therapies or medications. Unfortunately clinics and labs do this because it is quicker and much much cheaper than the labour intensive process of making a custom made orthotic. Also they often need the cheaper orthotic to help offset the costs of offering incentives (see above). We feel telling a patient they are getting a custom item and then billing to insurance providers as such is unethical and fraudulent. The Hamilton Foot Clinic provides high quality truly custom made orthotics and can also complete in-house hand-made alterations and adjustments as needed on the spot.
We have a set rate for our foot care, and do not offer discounts, as our rates are already fairly priced.
Both Chiropodists and Podiatrists specialize in the assessment, treatment, and prevention of lower limb disorders. However, all Podiatrists in Ontario graduated in the U.S. and moved to Ontario before 1993. No new Podiatrists have registered in Ontario for 25 years.
Podiatrists also have a slightly broader range of treatments that they are able to perform. They are able to perform surgeries all the way to the bone, whereas Chiropodists' qualifications allow them to operate as far as the muscle/soft tissue. Podiatrists are also able to prescribe both topical and ingested medications, Chiropodists can only prescribe topical medications.
Canadian Certified Pedorthists are experts in orthotic and orthopaedic footwear, trained in musculoskeletal examination, postural analysis, and movement patterns. Pedorthics is the practice of evaluating patients to create and deliver them proper footwear to help prevent and improve painful and debilitating foot conditions.
They focus on the assessment of muscle and joint function, lower limb anatomy, and the interaction between the lower limb and foot and the rest of the body.
The goal of all pedorthists is to assist patients in achieving, and maintaining, proper lower limb health and foot care, and living healthy and active lives.
Yes, it is greatly appreciated if you take of any nail polish that may be on your toes before an appointment, especially if the appointment is specifically for foot care or a day surgery.