Windsor

$1.5M announced for WECHU senior dental program

Seniors in Windsor-Essex can smile a little brighter — the Windsor Essex County Health Unit received notice from the government of Ontario of funding for the Ontario Seniors Dental Care Program. 

The program was announced as part of the 2019 Ontario budget

WECHU will receive $1.5 million for the program locally, but there is no word on when it will officially launch. (Kai Pfaffenbach/Reuters)

Seniors in Windsor-Essex can smile a little brighter — the Windsor Essex County Health Unit received notice from the government of Ontario of funding for the Ontario Seniors Dental Care Program. 

"We have a good program with Healthy Smiles Ontario but this is slated for seniors," said WECHU CEO Theresa Marentette. "We're quite pleased about that."

Announced as part of the 2019 Ontario budget, seniors with incomes of less than $19,300 annually — or senior couples with combined annual incomes less than $32,300 — will be able to receive dental service from their public health unit.

"No senior in Ontario should go without quality dental care," said Christine Elliot, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care said when the program was announced in April. 

The announcement said that in 2015, there were 61,000 emergency room visits for dental programs, costing the Ontario health care system about $31 million.

The new program specifically targets those over 65. Ontario residents under 17 will still be treated under the Healthy Smiles Ontario program if income requirements are met.

"We are looking forward to providing this service in our community," said Marentette. WECHU will receive $1.5 million for the program locally, but there is no word on when it will officially launch.

With files from Amy Dodge

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.