Saturday, June 15, 2024

Dental Care Milestone: Two Million Seniors Approved for Canadian Coverage

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The Government of Canada is marking new milestones toward making dental care more accessible and affordable in Canada. This week, two million Canadian seniors have been approved to receive coverage under the Canadian Dental Care Plan (CDCP) and can access the necessary dental care. To date, more than 90,000 seniors have received care from participating providers. For some seniors, it is their first time seeing an oral health provider in decades. If those eligible for services do not already have an oral health provider, they can consult Sun Life’s CDCP Provider Search to find an oral health provider in their community.

Seniors aged 65 and over who do not have access to dental insurance and have an adjusted family net income of less than $90,000 can apply to the CDCP. In June, applications will be expanded to adults with a valid disability tax credit and children under 18, making oral health care more affordable and accessible for many other Canadian residents.

There are currently close to 10,000 oral health providers offering a wide range of services to patients covered under the CDCP. This includes dentists and dental specialists, independent dental hygienists, and denturists. They thank all participating providers for supporting the CDCP and for their important role in helping to improve health outcomes in Canada.

CDCP Clients Advised to Confirm Provider Participation and Billing Details for Dental Care Services

CDCP clients should always ask the oral health provider if they are participating in the CDCP before booking an appointment. Starting July 8, oral health providers will be able to directly bill Sun Life for services provided on a claim-by-claim basis, without formally signing up for the CDCP. This means clients will be able to see any oral health provider of their choice, as long as the provider agrees to directly bill Sun Life for services provided under the plan.

Depending on their household income, CDCP clients may have to pay a co-payment, as well as additional charges, depending on the services received. Before receiving any services, CDCP clients should confirm the amount that is not covered by the CDCP and that they will need to pay directly to their provider. CDCP clients should not pay the full amount and seek reimbursement from Sun Life, as this is not possible.

Oral health care is health care. No one should have to choose between taking care of their teeth and paying their bills. The CDCP is going to help make dental care more affordable for up to nine million Canadians who are estimated to currently not have coverage.

Dental Care

$13 Billion Investment to Implement Canadian Dental Care Plan and Oral Health Access Fund

Budget 2023 announced an investment of $13 billion over five years, starting in 2023-24, and $4.4 billion ongoing, to implement the Canadian Dental Care Plan (CDCP). The Government has also committed to spend $250 million over three years starting in 2025-26, and $75 million ongoing, to establish the Oral Health Access Fund (OHAF).

The Government of Canada continues to increase opportunities to access oral health services. This month, the government launched the Oral Health Access Fund (OHAF), which will further reduce barriers that prevent Canadians from accessing oral health care, including in rural and remote communities. The first Call for Proposals will support projects submitted by oral health training institutions.

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CDCP provider participation is voluntary. Oral health providers eligible to participate and who can bill for services include dentists, denturists, dental hygienists, and dental specialists. Health Canada is collaborating with provinces and territories regarding their public oral health services, including the coordination of benefits between the CDCP and provincial and territorial publicly funded programs.

 

Resource: Government of Canada, May 22, 2024

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