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What are the benefits of an OIS provider vs. regular family physician for employees and employers?

An occupational health specialist will focus on the prevention and management of workplace injuries and illnesses. They promote health and safety in the workplace and encourage a safe and timely return to work. Special training is given to OIS providers to understand the different aspects of workplace injuries/illness and how to effectively deal with the issues of returning to work. OIS physicians also have the benefit of ordering specialized tests including MRI and CT scans without the approval of WCB when medically necessary. Most testing is performed within 24 – 48 hours of the request.

A family physician specializes in general health. They don’t normally have any specialized training in workplace injuries and illnesses. Although they do have the same wants of having you return to work in a safe and timely manner, the process on which to get there may be very different. Specialized testing done thru family physicians can take weeks even months to obtain permission to order. The case needs to be accepted to WCB first, seen by an adjudicator, assigned a case manager and the case reviewed all before getting the ok to order the same testing that takes OIS physicians 24 – 48 hours to obtain.


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