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An important message to all our OHIP-insured patients

As of September 1, we will stop providing OHIP insured eye care services. This will affect seniors, children and some adults with certain medical or eye conditions.

Why are optometrists doing this?

For over 30 years, successive Ontario governments have ignored optometrists. In 1989 the fee paid for an OHIP insured eye exam was $39.15. Today, over 32 years later, the fee paid is on average $44.65. This has not kept up with inflation and only covers approximately ½ of the cost (occupancy costs, staff, utilities, equipment, taxes, supplies, etc.) of providing the service. Every time we provide an OHIP insured eye exam, we do so at a loss. This is not sustainable. We are doing this because we are looking for a solution that will allow quality eye care to be available to all our patients in the future.

For those provinces which provide a similar publicly funded service, Ontario is by far the lowest for reimbursement.

The Government’s Offer

You may have read the government has offered us an 8.48% increase on our fees. For a senior’s exam that would raise our fee to about $51.00. While this may appear generous, it still leaves us about 30% below Manitoba’s reimbursement, the next lowest province, and would still be far from covering our costs.

How Does This Affect You?

If you are a senior (65+), a child (19 and under) or an adult with an OHIP insured condition such as diabetes, we will be unable to see you. Provincial law prevents you, or your third-party insurance from paying for an OHIP insured examination. For those who already have an appointment scheduled, we will be contacting you week by week to place your names on a priority booking list so that we can see you when this crisis is resolved.

If you are between the ages of 20 – 64 and do not have an OHIP insured condition (or have a non-OHIP insured need) we are still able to provide you with service. If you have an emergency eye situation, please do call our office so that we can help you get the appropriate care.

How can I help?

You can help us work toward finding a solution by visiting saveeyecare.ca to sign our online petition and writing or calling your MPP.

Monte McNaughton, MPP Minister of Labour

Email: monte.mcnaughtonco@pc.ola.org

81 Front Street West
Strathroy, Ontario N7G 1X6
Tel: (519) 245-8696

OHIP and Your Access to Vision Care

Recently, you may have seen news about optometrists in Ontario and wondered how this impacts you and your family. Teeple Optometry along with optometrists across Ontario are deeply concerned about future access to professional vision care services

What’s the problem?

For more than 30 years, the Ontario government has failed to adequately fund eye care. For more than 30 years, the Ontario government has refused to formally negotiate with optometrists.

In 1989, the Ontario government paid $39.15 for an eye exam.

Thirty-two years later, in 2021, the Ontario government pays on average $44.65 for an eye exam.

That fee does not come close to covering the office expenses such as staff, rent, utilities, equipment, and supplies required to provide an eye exam.

The level of funding for OHIP-insured eye exams is not sustainable.

How will this affect you?

Unfortunately, those who will be impacted the most are the groups OHIP is supposed to protect; our children, seniors and those with existing eye diseases. If the government continues to ignore this issue, Ontario optometrists will be left with no choice but to stop providing OHIP services starting September 1st, 2021.

This means that any person who is OHIP-insured for their eye exam will not be able to see an optometrist, including those 19 years of age and under, 65 years of age and over, and adults with eye diseases related to diabetes, glaucoma and cataracts.

Ontario law makes it illegal for optometrists to accept direct payment or alternate health insurance for OHIP-insured services. As a result, these patients will simply not be able to book an appointment starting September 1st.

After more than 30 years of neglect, the Ontario government can still fix this before September 1st. They only need to commit to a formal negotiation that will lead to a solution where optometrists no longer have to pay out of pocket to provide an eye exam to OHIP-insured patients.  We are pleading with the Ontario government to act responsibly and avoid any impact to our patients.

What’s our plan?

At Teeple Optometry we are advocating for your continued access to quality eye care. For those of you who may have existing appointments after September 1st, or for those with eye diseases who require frequent monitoring we understand this is a difficult situation. If the Ontario government allows service to be disrupted, we will contact you to discuss an individual plan to ensure your specific health needs will be taken care of appropriately. We plan to keep you updated on our efforts and we are available to answer any questions you may have.

How You Can Help

If you or your family uses OHIP-insured services, and you want to help us ensure access to your doctor is not at risk, we invite you to visit SaveEyeCare.ca to sign an electronic letter to tell our elected government officials that eye care matters to you!

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