As part of the 2017 Budget the Province of Ontario introduced free prescription drug coverage for everyone aged 24 and under.
It’s called Children and Youth Pharmacare, a new drug benefit program that fully covers the cost of prescription medications for everyone aged 24 and under, regardless of family income. This program will ensure that young adults have access to universal drug coverage and parents never have to choose between paying for their children’s prescription drugs and providing other essentials according to the Province.
Ontario says its also increasing health care investments by $11.5 billion over the next three years. This investment is said to improve access to care, expand mental health and addiction services, and enhance the experience and recovery of patients. It includes $1.3 billion to further reduce wait times.
There are also several new major hospital projects across the province included in the budget to the tune of a $9-billion capital investment over 10 years to provide access to care. The Province says is expanding home and community care programs, including home nursing, personal support and physiotherapy services, with an additional investment of $250 million this year. As well family and friends caring for loved ones will getaccess to respite care, education and training, and a new Ontario Caregiver Tax Credit.
Ontario also announced a new Dementia Strategy to improve and better coordinate services for those living with dementia and their caregivers by providing more than $100 million over three years.This will include funding to expand provincewide access to community programs and other investments to enhance access to care, information and support when a diagnosis is made.