Ontario is helping families afford the care they need to stay healthy by making prescription medications free for everyone age 24 and under.
Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, met with young mothers at Massey Centre in Toronto where he launched OHIP+: Children and Youth Pharmacare. In just under two weeks, children and youth will be able to get their medications at no cost by simply showing their Ontario health card number and a prescription at a pharmacy. Coverage will be automatic, with no upfront costs.
Providing medication at no cost for children and youth will make a difference in the lives of Ontario families, including many vulnerable groups such as low-income families, large families, single parents with children, students, young people in the workforce, and unemployed and underemployed young people.
Starting January 1, more than 4,400 medications will be covered, such as asthma inhalers, drugs to treat depression, anxiety, epilepsy and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, antibiotics, EpiPens (epinephrine auto-injectors), insulin, diabetes test strips, oral contraceptives, medications to treat some childhood cancers and other rare conditions, and many others. “We believe all families in Ontario deserve the same access to medication they need to protect the health and lives of their children,” Hoskins said.
Ontario is the first province to provide prescription medication coverage at no cost for children and youth age 24 years and under, which will make a real difference in the lives of people across the province. The enhanced OHIP program was announced as part of the 2017 budget.