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Devices that compensate for a physical deficiency

The program covers the cost of purchase, replacement and repair of certain technical aids. These aids compensate for a person’s motor deficiency. They include various types of orthoses and prostheses, walking aids, locomotor assists, posture assists and standing aids.

Who is eligible?

To qualify, you must be insured under the Health Insurance Plan and have a physical impairment. You must also fulfil the eligibility conditions related to the device you need.

Procedure for obtaining or replacing a device

Check whether you need a prescription

In certain situations, a medical prescription written by an authorized health professional is required to obtain or replace a device. You must have a prescription in the following situations only:

  • Locomotor assist or walking aid: if there is no attestation of diagnosis confirming the physical impairment on file at the authorized facility or laboratory.
  • Orthosis: if the prescribed period of use has expired. This period is specified on the original medical prescription.
  • Prosthesis: if there is no medical report by a physician or intervention plan by an occupational therapist or physiotherapist on file at the authorized facility or laboratory.

Go to the right place

To obtain a device, go to an authorized public rehabilitation facility or private orthosis and prosthesis laboratory. For a locomotor assist, posture assist or standing aid, go to an authorized public rehabilitation facility only.

To have a device repaired or replaced, go to an authorized facility or laboratory, preferably the one where it was obtained.

Lost, stolen, damaged devices or devices used negligently

Coverage excludes the cost of repairing or replacing lost, stolen or damaged devices or devices used negligently. You will have to bear the costs or check with your personal insurer (home insurance or other).

Information about prescription

If required, the prescription must:

  • State your physical impairment and the resulting incapacity
  • Indicate the necessity of obtaining a device
  • Include recommendations for using the device

For all devices
  • Medical specialists, such as geriatricians, neurologists, neurosurgeons, orthopedists, physiatrists (physical and rehabilitation medicine) and rheumatologists
  • Medical practitioners and pediatric medical specialists practising in a hospital or offering technical aid services
For certain devices
  • General surgeons practising in a hospital, for lower limb prostheses
  • Plastic surgeons, for upper- and lower-limb orthoses
  • Cardiologists, pneumologists or physicians specializing in internal medicine, to obtain a powered wheelchair due to severe cardiovascular or cardiorespiratory failure
  • Specialized nurse practitioners, except to obtain or replace orthoses

Description of devices and conditions of coverage

Check whether coverage of the device or service that you need is subject to certain conditions. To find out more on the covered services and related rates, refer to the page Tariff for insured devices which compensate for a motor deficiency and related services.

Orthoses are designed for one of the following functions for a limb or organ that has lost its primary function, that has never fully developed or that was affected by a birth defect:

  • Preserve a body function
  • Compensate for a deficient body function
  • Increase the efficiency of a body function
  • Assist a muscular or articular structure
  • Stabilize a part of the body

You must wear your orthosis every day, at the request of the authorized physician, for it to remain covered. You must also use it for at least:

  • 6 months for a lower limb
  • 3 months for the trunk
  • 1 month for an upper limb

There is no required minimum period of use if you are under age 19 and need an orthosis to correct a deformation. However, the specialist must have recommended that you wear it daily.

Prostheses are designed to fully or partially replace a limb. They are also designed to restore the primary function of a limb or its original appearance. An example of a prosthesis is an artificial leg.

Locomotor assists are used for moving around. They include manual or powered wheelchairs, positioning bases, orthomobiles and adapted strollers.

To find out more on the coverage conditions for wheelchairs, refer to the publication entitled Important Things to Know About Your Wheelchair.

Ambulation aids are supports that facilitate or permit walking. They include crutches, canes, walking frames (with and without wheels) and pediatric walkers.

Ambulation aids are covered only if used daily for at least 1 year.

Posture assists support one or more parts of the body (head, upper or lower limbs, spine) while a person is seated in a wheel chair or positioning base.

Standing aids support the trunk and lower limbs, thus enabling a person to assume an upright position.

Examples of services not covered by the program

  • Adult walking frames
  • Elastic stockings
  • Orthopedic shoes
  • Corsets made of fabric
  • Plantar orthosis
  • Orthoses worn only when practising sports
  • Services and devices provided by unauthorized facilities or laboratories
  • 3-wheel scooters
  • 4-wheel scooters

Other technical aid programs

Certain technical aids are covered under other government programs. This is the case for 3 wheel scooters and 4 wheel scooters, walkers and adapted shoes. To find out more, refer to the page Assistive Devices Programs for Persons with a Physical or Intellectual Disability or an Autism Spectrum Disorder on the Qué website.

Application for review

You can apply for a review of a RAMQ decision. To find out more, refer to the page Request a review of a decision.

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