MIG Update – December 12, 2022

Chronic Pain Assessment Does Not Satisfy MIG Escape

This week, a MIG hold where the Applicant relied solely on a chronic pain assessment report as evidence that she did not sustain a minor injury. The Tribunal, though determining the evidence led did not support injuries beyond those defined as minor, offered as well comment on what is required to consider the cost of a chronic pain assessment report.

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Factor: Chronic Pain Assessment Does Not Satisfy MIG Escape

In Cho v Certas (20-011492), Miyeon Cho was involved in MVA on August 11, 2018 and alleged she should be removed from the MIG as she suffers a “Chronic Pain Disorder Associated with Psychological Factors and General Medical Conditions” with psychological diagnoses such as Major Depressive Disorder and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Further, entitlement to a Treatment Plan for chronic pain assessment in the amount of $2195.

Cho, in support of these diagnoses and conditions relied solely on a September 2020 Chronic Pain Assessment Report, that also contains psychological diagnoses.

Certas on the other hand submitted that “the report ought to be given little to no weight due to its timing, the fact that not a single document was reviewed in completing the report, the diagnoses are inconsistent with the findings upon examination, the lack of an impairment, and the significant inconsistencies…”

The Tribunal agreed, finding:

  • The September 2020 Chronic Pain Assessment Report was afforded little weight as there were several inconsistencies. For one, while the report noted that Cho had struck her head on her window, the Ambulance Call Report confirmed she did not.
  • Similarly, the report noted that Cho continued with treatment 1-2 times per week, yet there was no evidence to support treatment beyond the first four months.
  • Further that a general practitioner is not qualified to make the psychological diagnoses rendered, and there were no other recorded mental health complaints within the two plus years after the accident.
  • Likewise, there was no evidence of any physical or pain issues in the nearly two years from the end of the physiotherapy treatment, nor did Cho establish a functional impairment or disability, whether caused by pain from the accident or any other cause.
  • The evidence is clear that Cho sustained strains and sprains to her back, neck, shoulders and wrist, which are defined as “minor injuries.”
  • As for the treatment plan requesting funding for the chronic pain assessment, the applicant’s injuries fall within the MIG and as the $3,500 limit has been exhausted, it is not payable. “Nevertheless, I note even without the $3,500 limit and regardless of my finding that the applicant has not established she has chronic pain or a psychological diagnosis, the applicant has not established that it was reasonable and necessary to conduct an assessment to investigate if she has those conditions, given the reasons above. There is simply an absence of evidence to indicate she has either condition”.

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