Toronto

Ontarians to officially say goodbye to red-and-white health cards by July 1

Hundreds of thousands of Ontarians will soon have to say goodbye for good to their old, red-and-white health cards.

About 300,000 red-and-white health cards remain in circulation

The Ontario government has been working for years to eliminate millions of old health cards, which it says are more prone to fraud. (John Rieti/CBC)

Hundreds of thousands of Ontarians will soon have to say goodbye for good to their old, red-and-white health cards.

The Canadian Press has learned the government has set July 1 as the date the cards will no longer be accepted.

It comes more than 25 years after the province first announced those cards would be phased out.

There are still about 300,000 red-and-white health cards in circulation, representing about two per cent of all Ontario health cards.

Health Minister Christine Elliott says those cards are more susceptible to fraud than the newer cards, which feature a photo and a signature.

She says people who still have the old health cards will get notices this month, and after that they will get monthly reminders to get a new card.