TAC and Myotherapy: A member of the public fights for recognition after a 4 year recovery from a bicycle accident

August 30, 2017 - 7 minutes read


As many of you may already be aware, Myotherapy is NOT currently funded by TAC if the treatment is performed by a qualified Myotherapist?? Sound bizarre? Well it should. As far as TAC are concerned, (extract from www.tac.vic.gov.au) their policy states that ‘for accidents on or after 1 January 1987 the TAC will consider funding the reasonable cost of massage/myotherapy services for injuries sustained by a TAC client in a transport accident when the treatment is performed by a physiotherapist, chiropractor or osteopath who is registered under the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law to practice in that profession.

Transport Accident Act 1986 reference: s.3 ‘medical service’ and s.60

The TAC can only fund the reasonable cost of massage/myotherapy services provided by a masseur or myotherapist for injuries sustained by a client in a transport accident which occurred prior to 1 January 1987 (MAB claims).’*

I feel your frustration at the above statements, hence why your MA Board members and staff are working towards a submission to the TAC to see this ruling overturned and have TAC recognise Myotherapy as a funded ‘authorised rehabilitation service’ when performed by qualified Myotherapists.

Recently a member of the public, who also happens to be a TAC patient, reached out to the association (MA) requesting that they consider supporting her current application to TAC/VCAT for a review of her Myotherapy care, in the hope that these services can be funded as part of her rehabilitation services. A brief background to this patients’ case:

Motor Vehicle Accident 4 years ago, whereby the female was on her bicycle and struck by a car. The impact resulted in the patient suffering an ABI, was in an induced coma and ICU for 3 weeks, followed by intense rehabilitation at Epworth as an in-patient for 3months including physiotherapy, speech pathology and OT. This was then followed with weekly visits to the Epworth Rehabilitation for another 2 years, until the patient moved to country Victoria. The patient also underwent botox injections in her calf, hamstring, wrist, pec and biceps muscles due to spasticity.

The patient stated the following when I spoke with her, “It was a disaster. I had greatly reduced strength in my hand, arm and fingers almost immediately.  It was the most depressing thing I’ve ever experienced.  It did return once the Botox had ‘worn off’ but I didn’t experience anything positive out of any of the three treatments.  My knee hyperextends, due to a recommendation to use the mini tramp as part of my rehab, and unbeknown to me, I had a poorly placed patella. I do a Pilates class once a week, which has been great, a spin class and I swim twice a week.  I’ve been doing that for almost 2 years since we moved to the country.  There has been a noticeable improvement just doing that but myotherapy has made it all much better.  I was a pianist in my former life.  That’s what I did for a living.  The brain injury put an end to that but I do a bit of ‘playing’ because it’s a good brain work out.  That’s partly why the Botox debacle was so depressing.  The little advances I had made in playing were all gone.  But since I started the myotherapy I’ve noticed a marked improvement in piano playing.  I’ve only had four sessions but it has been the best thing I have done since the smash.” 

Myself, Neil Fisher (CEO) and Dr Karen Lucas have all been speaking with this patient to further understand how we can best support her recent submission, and in addition to this, we aim to re-submit a submission from the association on behalf of the Myotherapy Profession to have Myotherapy recognised as a funded ‘authorised rehabilitation service’.

So, we call out to all of you. The TAC adopts the following principles within their Clinical Framework for the provision of health services to injured people:

  1. Principle One   Measure and demonstrate the effectiveness of treatment
  2. Principle Two   Adopt a biopsychosocial approach
  3. Principle Three   Empower the injured person to manage their injury
  4. Principle Four   Implement goals focused on optimising function, participation and return to work
  5. Principle Five   Base treatment on best available research evidence

You can read more about the TAC Clinical Framework here

We believe that there are many qualified Myotherapists who are currently or have previously treated patients that have sustained injury/injuries because of a MVA, and due to Myotherapy being the service that gave them the best outcomes, they chose to continue with the care aware (and possibly frustrated) that they would not have this service funded, or even subsidised. In addition to our submission, we aim to build a ‘petition’ signed by these members of the public and their Myotherapists that helps to get behind the submission and strengthen our stance on the viability of Myotherapy services for TAC victims. Please select this LINK to this petition and feel free to download, print, distribute via social pages, email, however you feel most appropriate to get the message out there.


Download a Petition form for our Submission to TAC


Myotherapy Association Australia are asking for your support, and thank you in advance.

Anna Yerondais
MA President