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Healthcare programmes

Chronic Back and Neck Rehabilitation(CNBR) Programme


GEMS offers you a back and neck rehabilitation programme to provide you or your dependants with appropriate treatment to manage your back and neck pain.

The focus of the programme is on functional rehabilitation with major components being controlled exercises, bio-psychosocial support, and pain education and management. Clinical measurements are taken and recorded which are used to evaluate the progress of treatment over time. 

Positive outcomes include improved flexibility, reduced pain and stiffness, and therefore leading to a more productive life. The programme consists of carefully planned exercises and guidance on how to deal with the back problem and live a normal life.



The intervention entails:

  • A comprehensive initial and ongoing assessment. 
  • Based on your risk profile identified during the assessment, a tailored treatment programme – ranging from 1 to 12 active treatment sessions are prescribed.
  • Physiotherapy for pain management and muscle relaxation.
  • A progress assessment with the program doctor. 
  • A comprehensive outcome assessment to assess progress and measure improvement over the course of the programme.
  • Tailored home-based exercises and stretches to ensure results are maintained long term.
  • Follow up visits to track improvement following the completion of the programme. 

How the programme works: 

  • Members identified or referred for the programme will be contacted by the Scheme and a short questionnaire will be completed.  
  • Members will be referred to the nearest centre and appointments will be managed by the centre.  
  • The centre will perform an assessment that will determine the treatment. Treatment will need to be completed for the member to benefit from the programme.

What benefits will be used?

The Orthopaedic Disease Management Programme benefit will be used for members receiving treatment at the centres.  This is not paid from your day-to-day benefits.

How can you access the programme?

There are a number of ways to access the programme:

  • Telephone: 0860 00 43 67
  • Email: enquiries@gems.gov.za  
  • GEMS may contact you if you had back problems in the past and had related treatment.  
  • Your GP or Specialist may refer you to the programme.

    Find a Chronic Back and Neck Rehabilitation (CBNR) center near you:

  • For Ruby Emerald, Emerald Value and Onyx (REO) options click here for CBNR providers.
  • For Tanzanite One and Beryl (T1B) options, click here for CBNR providers.