Orientation and Mobility

Policy

The TAC can pay the reasonable costs of orientation and mobility services for a client where required as a result of a transport accident injury under section 60 of the Transport Accident Act 1986 (the Act).

Guidelines

What can the TAC pay for in relation to orientation and mobility services?

The TAC can pay the reasonable costs of orientation and mobility services:

  • required as a result of a transport accident injury
  • that are reasonable, necessary or appropriate in the circumstances
  • where safe and effective
  • in accordance with the TAC's policies
  • authorised by the TAC under the Transport Accident Act 1986

Travel

The TAC can pay the reasonable cost of travel time for a qualified orientation and mobility instructor where:

  • prior written approval has been provided by the TAC
  • a request from a medical practitioner has been provided confirming the client is medically unfit to travel, or
  • the treating therapist clinically justifies that the treatment should be delivered in a community setting, e.g. the home, hospital, school or client's place of work
  • the orientation and mobility instructor providing the treatment is the most appropriate according to the geographic location of the client and the therapy specialty required
  • travel is separately billed and is reimbursed on a time only basis at a pro rata rate.

Travel time can be claimed only for travel to and from the practitioner's practice address and the community setting (eg. home, hospital, school or client's place of work). Where more than one client is visited in a single travel period, total travel costs should be apportioned equally to those clients to whom services have been provided.
For example: Practice rooms are in A, patient 1 in B, patient 2 in C, patient 3 in D, travelling time is as below:

PatientFromToTime
1AB45 minutes
2BC50 minutes
3CD40 minutes
Return to RoomsDA1 hour 30 minutes
  Total travelling 3 hours 45 minutes 

3 hours 45 minutes @ $93.16 (fee as 1 July 2017) per hour = $349.35, therefore travel per patient, $340.50/3 = $116.45 and the travel time of 3 hours 45 minutes will average to 1 hours 15 minutes each. The average travel time and the amount charged must be clearly stated on the invoice.  For the current fee, refer to the Orientation and Mobility Services fee schedule.

Who may provide orientation and mobility services?

Orientation and mobility services may be provided by a qualified orientation and mobility instructor. A qualified orientation and mobility instructor is usually employed by a specialist agency that works within the guidelines of the Disability Services Act (1986).

What information does the TAC require to consider paying for orientation and mobility services?

For clients with a severe injury, orientation and mobility services will be approved as part of the TAC independence planning process. As part of the independence planning process the instructor will be required to submit a written recommendation including:

  • goals of the program
  • frequency of attendance
  • cost of the program.

For all other clients the TAC requires a request from their treating therapist, medical practitioner or via self-referral in order to consider paying for orientation and mobility services.

When will the TAC respond to a request?

The TAC will respond to written treatment and service requests as set out in the TAC Service Charter.

To assist the TAC to make a decision regarding a request for orientation and mobility services a request may be reviewed by the TAC Clinical Panel. The Clinical Panel may contact the requesting medical practitioner to seek further information and/or discuss the proposed treatment prior to making a recommendation to the TAC regarding the request. The TAC will respond to the request when they have received the Clinical Panel's recommendation.

What are the TAC's invoice requirements?

Please refer to the How to Invoice the TAC information page.

What fees are payable for orientation and mobility services?

Please refer to the Orientation and Mobility Services fee schedule.

In relation to orientation and mobility services, what won't the TAC pay for?

The TAC will not pay for:

  • Treatment or services for a person other than the client
  • treatment or services for a condition that existed before the transport accident or that is not a direct result of a transport accident
  • treatment or services not authorised by the TAC under the Transport Accident Act 1986
  • treatment or services subcontracted to, or provided by a non-registered provider
  • fees associated with cancellation or non attendance
  • treatment or services provided outside the Commonwealth of Australia
  • treatment or services provided by telephone or other non face to face mediums
  • telephone calls and telephone consultations between providers and clients/workers, and between other providers, including hospitals
  • treatment, services, prostheses or equipment where there is no National Health and Medical Research Council level 1 or level 2 evidence that the treatment, service, prostheses or equipment is safe and effective. Refer to the Non-Established, New or Emerging Treatments and Services policy
  • services provided more than 2 years prior to the request for funding except where the request for payment is made within 3 years of the transport accident. Refer to the Time Limit to Apply for the Payment of Medical and Like Expenses policy.

Orientation and Mobility Services

Effective 1 July 2017

Service DescriptionTAC Item Number2017/18 Maximum Payment Rate2016/17 Maximum Payment Rate
Orientation & Mobility Training (Per Hour)ED0150$93.16$91.80
Travel associated with Orientation & Mobility Training
(Prior approval is required)
ED0155$93.16$91.80

GST

*The TAC maximum fee includes a 10% allowance for GST for items which TAC believes are taxable supplies.  If you are a provider not registered for GST:

  • You are not legally permitted to charge GST
  • You should indicate on all invoices submitted your status as 'not registered for GST purposes'
  • The TAC will only reimburse you an amount which excludes the GST component for items billed where the maximum fee includes a 10% allowance for GST

If you are not registered for GST please state on all invoices the TAC item number listed for providers not registered.