The WSIB may provide for such assistive devices and prostheses (orthopaedic devices) as are necessary.


Assistive devices and prostheses includes the provision of

  • artificial limbs or eyes
  • hearing aids
  • wigs
  • orthopaedic footwear or gloves
  • braces, neck halters
  • elastic stockings
  • wristlets or other wrist support, and
  • crutches or canes, when required on a permanent basis.

Not included in assistive devices and prostheses are wheelchairs or elevators.

Routine repair, adjustment or replacement necessitated by general wear and tear are also included.


Power or hand operated wheelchairs may be authorized for injured workers with bi-lateral lower extremity amputations, hip disarticulations, and the seriously physically or neurologically disabled such as paraplegics, quadriplegics, and hemiplegics.

Authorization for wheelchairs is subject to clinical evidence supporting need.

The individual worker is responsible for ensuring that appropriate maintenance, normal inspection, repair and/or replacement is carried out. Costs involved will be the responsibility of the WSIB unless damage to the items supplied is attributable to misuse or is in conflict with warranty requirements and recommended operating instructions.

Swim leg - work-related condition

Payment for the provision, repair and/or replacement of a special waterproof (swim leg) prosthesis may be authorized to facilitate

  • a return to employment, or
  • use of a home or communal shower.

Costs related to the provision of a replacement and/or repair of the prosthesis shall continue as long as the requirement exists.

Swim leg - non-work-related condition

Provision of a swim leg is

  • conditional upon acquisition of such an item being the only barrier to an employment activity and/or a worker's participation in an assessment/training program, and
  • limited to a once only basis, with subsequent replacement being the worker's responsibility.


Replacement or repair will not be authorized where damage to the prosthesis is attributable to misuse, failure to follow the recommended operating instructions or warranty requirements.


Exceptions to the preceding criteria will be considered on an individual basis.

Application date

This policy applies to all decisions made on or after June 1, 1989, for all accidents.

Document History

This document replaces 06-04-04 dated June 1989.


Legislative Authority

Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997, as amended
Sections 32, 33

Workers' Compensation Act, R.S.O. 1990, as amended
Sections 50, 52


#19, June 25, 2004, Page 381