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Hip and Knee Arthritis Rapid Access Clinic

About the Rapid Access Clinic

The Rapid Access Clinic is for patients with moderate to severe hip or knee arthritis who want to learn more about their joint problem and treatment options, including joint replacement. We accept referrals from physicians or nurse practitioners and aim to see patients within 4 weeks of referral. Patients receive a specialized assessment, education, and personalized treatment recommendations. If a patient needs to see an orthopaedic surgeon, an appointment will be made after this visit.

How to get an appointment

Your physician or nurse practitioner may refer you to this clinic. An X-ray report must be included.

 

 

Help us reduce unnecessary MRIs: An MRI is not needed for diagnosing hip or knee arthritis. In most cases an X-ray is all that is needed. 

About the clinic visit

Who will I see for my assessment? 

You will be seen by an Advanced Practice Provider. This is a physiotherapist or occupational therapist with advanced education and experience. These professionals have undergone specialized training and work closely with the orthopaedic surgeons in a team approach to your care.

What can I expect?

During the assessment the Advanced Practice Provider will ask you questions about your hip or knee problem. They will examine your joints and review the results of tests you have had. You will complete a walking test or a sit-to-stand test. These tests give the Advanced Practice Provider more information about your function.

Once the Advanced Practice Provider has a detailed picture of your joint problem, they will explain the results, provide you with information and education, and answer your questions. This clinic visit is an opportunity for you to ask questions and get clarity about your joint problem. You will receive personalized treatment recommendations.

Personalized recommendations include:

  • How to treat your symptoms
  • How to improve your function
  • Therapeutic exercises
  • Recommended physical activities
  • Community programs or services that may help you
  • When to see a surgeon about your joint problem and how to prepare for surgery

Preparing for the appointment

How long is the clinic visit?

Approximately 1 hour, but it may be longer if you need additional X-rays or a health assessment.

What to bring

  • Your OHIP card
  • A list of medications you are taking
  • A CD with the X-ray images
  • Reports of other tests you have had for your hip or knee problem
  • Loose clothing that allows you to move and so we can see your knees (e.g. shorts or pants that stretch and can be rolled up above your knees)
For the referral, your doctor sends us X-ray reports.

For the clinic visit, you need to bring the CD with the X-ray images. 

Will I need to complete any forms?

Yes, you will complete forms with questions about your pain and function. It might help you feel more prepared for your appointment if you read them or even complete them ahead of time.

 

  

 

 

What if I need X-rays?

If you need additional X-rays, your Advanced Practice Provider will make arrangements for these to be done onsite during your assessment. The results will be shared with you during the visit.

What if I need to reschedule my appointment?

If you need to reschedule or are running late for your appointment, call the booking desk at 416-967-8617.

Helpful questions

Questions you may want to ask

  • What is wrong with my joint?
  • What treatments help pain and stiffness?
  • Which exercises are best for me and why?
  • Is it safe to exercise or be active when my joints hurt?
  • When is the right time to see a surgeon about joint replacement?
  • What should I do if my pain and stiffness get worse?

Questions you may be asked

  • How long are you stiff in the morning before it’s as good as it’s going to get?
  • How would you rate your pain over the last 2 days on a scale of 0 to 10, with 10 being the highest?
  • What activities have you given up because of your joint problem?
  • Have you had any falls?

Next steps

What if I need surgery?

If you and your Advanced Practice Provider decide it is the right time to see an orthopaedic surgeon, an appointment will be arranged. To help you prepare, we may have you see a nurse to assess your health.

Learn more about our team

Which surgeon will I see?

You can choose to see the next available surgeon or the surgeon of your choice. The Advanced Practice Provider will explain your options.

What if I'm not ready for surgery?

Many of our patients don’t want or need surgery. If that’s your situation, we will provide you with education and treatment recommendations to help you carry on. You may be given a follow up visit depending on the results of the assessment.


What patients say about the Rapid Access Clinic »

“Great experience. Felt good leaving. Left with a lot of information to help me cope and manage my arthritis.”

“Exceptional service – everything explained clearly.”

“Courteous and friendly staff. Very knowledgeable and helpful.”

“My daughter and I were made very comfortable in the clinic. All our questions and concerns were answered to our full satisfaction. The healthcare providers were all excellent.


Patient satisfaction »

Patients have been very satisfied with the skills and knowledge of the advanced practice providers, their personal manner, and answers to questions.

Satisfaction with the visit overall: over 95%*

*Based on a standardized 9-item patient satisfaction survey of over 100 patients


Want to know more about our team approach to care?

If you want to know more about our team approach to care and how it was developed, please see our Model of Care page.

Want to know more about Advanced Practice Providers?

If you want to know more about Advanced Practice Providers (APPs), please see our About APPs page.

Additional resources:

Location and contact

Holland Orthopaedic and Arthritic Centre

43 Wellesley Street East
Toronto, ON M4Y 1H1
RAC booking phone number: 416-967-8617

Central Intake fax (for referrals): 416-599-4577
Toll-free fax: 1-877-411-4577