BMD Understands Doctors
BMD Services recognizes that the Disability Tax Credit can be perceived negatively by Medical Practitioners. Medical Practitioners have reported that they find the DTC confusing, time consuming, and even worrisome. We at BMD are very sympathetic to doctors. We understand that the demands of treating patient’s health needs can be difficult enough for doctors without the burden of the myriad of complex health forms that can include, private health insurance, work compensation, provincial health, federal health, and so on.
Barry M. D. Ho, our company President, has attended focus group sessions and communicated directly with doctors in an effort to better understand their medical practice environment. Many Medical Practitioners reported that they felt that too many forms were counterproductive to providing proper patient health care, largely because many of them were either redundant, overly complex, or time consuming to complete, taking away more of their precious time away from actual patient care. They also reported that they feared being challenged by administrators of the various programs, demanding again more of their time to complete additional forms, or worse, to attend hearings. The DTC form is considered one of the more problematic in this group.
It is important for patients to understand the complete environment their doctors operate in. Doctors are not only medical professionals, they are business people too. They expect to be able to make a fair living at their practice, and consider that their time is money. As an example, most Family Doctors in Canada, charge their respective provinces about $30 for each patient visit (not including physicals). Some doctors report that after taking into account the cost to operate their practice, other overhead, and income taxes, they profit $5 to $10 per patient visit. As a result many family doctors feel the need to see 50 to 70 patients a day in order to make a proper living. Although many doctors charge a fee to complete patient forms, most doctors report that they charge these fees more to limit the volume of forms patients will request, than to add to their practice financial earnings. They would rather not complete forms at all, and would instead rather focus on seeing patients and providing direct medical care.
For these reasons, BMD understands that it can be challenging for Medical Practitioners to look after their patients DTC forms needs. BMD provides assistance not only to patients but also to doctors in an effort to assist them to better understand the DTC forms, their criteria, and how their patient’s medical conditions may qualify for the DTC, based on those criteria. This allows doctors to complete the forms accurately and quickly, to their benefit as well as their patients.
What Doctors Are Saying About The DTC Form
“I never sign those (DTC) forms. I can’t be bothered.”
“I don’t sign many of them (DTC forms), because my income taxes are high enough, and these tax programs make my taxes go up even higher.”
“I sign these all the time and my patients are never approved (for the DTC).”
“I have always been uncomfortable with these (DTC) forms, never being sure of what they (CRA) are looking for. They regularly send me bothersome letters challenging what I certified on the original form.”
“I fill these forms out for my patients, but I don’t spend too much time trying to understand them, or worrying if I complete them correctly. These are (income) tax forms, so if the tax department thinks my patients qualify, let them figure it out.”
“I don’t have time to fill out every form my patients bring me. If I filled out all of them, I wouldn’t have any time to treat my patients.”
“Audiologists in this province as a general rule do not sign the DTC form for any patients unless they are deaf.”
“We (Audiologists) are aware that patients who are less severe can also qualify, however because the DTC criteria are so confusing, we do not certify those patients.”
“Many of us (Medical Practitioners) believe that if we sign the DTC forms incorrectly, we can be held financially responsible for the DTC refunds (have to pay the government back).”
What Patient’s Are Saying
About Their Doctors And The DTC Form
“My doctor completed the DTC form completely wrong. They had no idea how to complete it properly according to my medical condition and history.”
“My doctor took my DTC form from me and said he would fill it out later, and then placed it on his desk onto a pile of other patient DTC forms. The pile was over one foot tall. He never did complete my form.”
“My doctor said she would not complete my DTC form, and said if I asked her again she would refuse to treat me as her patient from now on.”
What a Major Canadian City Newspaper Had To Say
About The DTC
“I have spoken with doctors… all agree the nine-page certification form is complex, can be contradictory and is likely the major hurdle.”*
“What shocked me in the last two weeks was hearing from people who obviously qualified for the DTC, but whose doctors have told them things like “you are not disabled enough,” and refused to fill out the form so that these patients could get proper tax treatment.”*
*Winnipeg Free Press Print Edition (article), “Tax credit form for disabilities not MD’s friend”, June 19, 2009