Toronto Public Health (TPH) welcomes the recent announcement by the Ontario government, https://news.ontario.ca/en/release/1000095/ontario-expanding-access-to-dental-care-and-affordable-prescription-drugs-for-vulnerable-seniors, to expand access to dental care for vulnerable seniors as part of its Ontario Seniors Dental Care program, https://www.ontario.ca/page/dental-care-low-income-seniors.
Beginning August 1, 2021, single residents aged 65 and over with an income of $22,200 or less and couples with a combined annual income of $37,100 are able to access free routine dental care. TPH currently operates 24 dental clinics, including its Mobile Dental Clinic, for free routine dental care for those who are eligible, including the Ontario Seniors Dental Care program. TPH clinics offer dental services such as examinations, X-rays, fillings, cleanings and extractions, as needed. Eligibility information can be found here: https://www.toronto.ca/community-people/health-wellness-care/health-programs-advice/dental-and-oral-health-services.
Dental cavities and tooth decay can cause pain, infection and lead to further gum, mouth and health problems. They can also impair important functions to our well-being such as eating, drinking and speaking. Improving access to oral and dental health services in Toronto is an important part of reducing poor health outcomes and diseases for low-income residents and families. Severe health issues linked to oral and dental health can be easily reduced and prevented, if residents can easily access these services.
Despite the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our city and health care services, it is important that people continue to seek dental and oral health care services when needed. Seeking care early and focusing on preventative health can help alleviate pressure on a health care system that is already experiencing system strain due to the virus.
“Good dental and oral health contribute to physical, mental and social well-being and to the enjoyment of life. It allows people to speak, eat and socialize without pain or embarrassment. Regular dental care, including regular brushing, flossing, and dentist visits can help prevent dental caries and keep the mouth and body in overall good health.”
– Dr. Eileen de Villa, Medical Officer of Health
“More seniors will be able to access quality oral health care, which in turn will improve their overall health and quality of life. We look forward to providing this essential health care service for our most vulnerable seniors.”
– Dr. Melvin Hsu, Director, Public Health Programs, Toronto Public Health
Toronto is home to more than 2.9 million people whose diversity and experiences make this great city Canada’s leading economic engine and one of the world’s most diverse and livable cities. As the fourth largest city in North America, Toronto is a global leader in technology, finance, film, music, culture and innovation, and consistently places at the top of international rankings due to investments championed by its government, residents and businesses. For more information visit the City’s website or follow us on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.