Skip navigation

Client Assessment, Diagnosis, Interventions

Client Assessment, Diagnosis, Interventions Standard of Practice PDF

(Updated May 31, 2023)


The physiotherapist demonstrates proficiency in client assessment, diagnosis, and interventions to deliver quality client-centered services.

Expected outcome

Clients can expect the physiotherapist to select appropriate assessment tools, make an informed physiotherapy diagnosis, and apply intervention procedures that are carried out proficiently for quality delivery of physiotherapy services.

Performance expectations

The physiotherapist:

  • Obtains clients’ ongoing informed consent to proposed services.
  • Applies appropriate assessment procedures to evaluate clients’ health status using standardized measures as available.
  • Uses critical thinking and professional judgment to interpret the assessment findings and determine a physiotherapy diagnosis.
  • Collaborates with clients, and develops realistic intervention plans to address clients’ needs and goals.
  • Applies intervention procedures safely and effectively.
  • Assigns appropriate tasks to supervisees with clients’ consent.
  • Re-evaluates and monitors clients’ responses throughout the course of interventions, making adjustments and discontinuing services that are no longer required or effective.
  • Makes appropriate referrals when clients’ needs are best addressed in collaboration with/or by another provider.
  • Collaborates with clients and other providers as appropriate to plan and implement discharge plans.
  • Provides client education to enable and optimize clients’ transition to self-management.
  • Promotes continuity in service by collaborating and facilitating clients’ transition from one health sector or provider to another.
  • Delivers only services that are clinically indicated for clients and that he/she is competently able to provide.
  • Advocates within her/his capabilities and context of practice for clients to obtain the resources they require to meet their health goals.

Female Genital Mutilation

Section 133.2 of the Health Professions Act requires that Colleges establish standards of practice regarding female genital mutilation.

The physiotherapist:

  • Must not procure or perform female genital mutilation.
  • Reports all instances where the physiotherapist has reasonable grounds to believe that the conduct of another regulated member of any College constitutes the procurement or performance of female genital mutilation to the Complaints Director of the other regulated member’s College.

Related Standards


Clients are recipients of physiotherapy services, and may be individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, or populations. An individual client may also be referred to as a patient. In some circumstances, clients/patients may be represented by their substitute decision-makers.

Female genital mutilation means the excision, infibulation or mutilation, in whole or in part, of the labia majora, labia minora, clitoral hood or clitoris of a person, except where valid consent is given, and

  • the person is at least 18 years of age and there is no resulting bodily harm; Act for the benefit of the physical health of the person or for the purpose of that person having normal reproductive functions or normal sexual appearance or function, or
  • the person is at least 18 years of age and there is no resulting bodily harm;

Informed consent refers to “receiving client or their legally authorized representative’s permission to proceed with an agreed course of physiotherapy service. Consent may be revoked at any time…Consent can be written or oral, and may be expressed or implied. Having a written consent form does not mean there is informed consent. Informed consent involves ongoing communication between the parties involved.”

Interventions refer to physiotherapy services that “include but are not limited to education and consultation, therapeutic exercise, soft tissue and manual therapy techniques including manipulation, electro-physical agents and mechanical modalities, functional activity training, cardio-respiratory and neuromotor techniques, and prescribing aids and devices.”

Physiotherapy services are “services provided by or under the direction of a physiotherapist. This includes client assessment and intervention, and related communication with and reporting to various parties for the purposes of delivering patient care.”

Procure means to obtain something by particular care and effort.

Proficiency means performance consistent with the established standards in the profession.

Quality of health-care services refers to the “acceptability, accessibility, appropriateness, effectiveness, efficiency, and safety” of the services provided.

Standardized measures refers to “measurement tools that are designed for a specific purpose in a given population. Information is provided regarding the administration, scoring, interpretation, and psychometric properties for each measure.”

Supervisees refers to students, assistants, and other support personnel.

Page updated: 15/07/2024