Policies and Guidelines

Policies and Guidelines

The Association develops and enforces its Standards of Practice, Policies and Guidelines on members.

ONNL guidelines and policies assist osteopathic manual practitioners to practice in a professional and
ethical manner.

Scope of Practice and Authorized Acts

Scope of Practice

Osteopathic manual practitioners in Newfoundland and Labrador (Canada) are primary healthcare
professionals who facilitate healing through manual osteopathic assessment and treatment of dysfunctions
of the whole person, with a focus on neuromusculoskeletal and joint disorders. Osteopathic manual
practitioners use various, recognised osteopathic manual techniques (such as osteoarticular, muscle energy,
cranial, visceral, strain/counterstrain, positional facilitated release, soft tissue therapy, etc) to work with the
body's ability to heal itself, thereby promoting health and wellbeing.

Authorized Acts

There are a number of acts that are considered authorized acts and outside the scope of practice of ONNL
members. Osteopathic manual practitioners are prohibited by law to provide any of these acts in
Newfoundland and Labrador, unless they are a dual registrant with a license in another health profession
that permits them to provide the acts listed below:

  • Communicating a medical diagnosis identifying, as the cause of a person's symptoms (ONNL
    members may provide a osteopathic diagnosis, but not a medical diagnosis).

  • Moving the joints beyond a person's usual physiological range of motion using a high velocity, low
    amplitude thrust (called manipulation, HVLA or grade V (five) mobilization).

  • Putting a finger beyond the anal verge for the purpose of manipulating or mobilizing the coccyx.

  • Injection of any kind and breaking the skin, & surgery of any type.

  • Prescribing any type of medication.

  • Taking x-rays and offering radiological services.

  • Casting and or bracing bone fractures.

  • Setting dislocated joints.