Saturday, April 28, 2007

Should dental care be included in medicare?

This is a gut-wrenching story from the Star - Plunged into darkness.

Simply put, Moses Han went blind because he didn't have the $1,300 to fix an infected tooth. The infection eventually caused him to lose his sight.

Dental care is not included in Canada's medicare system so provincial health insurance does not cover it. There are some options for treatment. For those on social assistance and the Ontario Disability Support Program, there's basic coverage, but no preventative treatment.


I have long wondered why basic dental care is not covered by the public health care system; especially for those who can't afford it and have no private insurance. An infection can not only cause blindness, but other major problems such as affecting cardiac function. Preventative treatment could save a lot of money in the long run.

Canadian citizens should not have their health compromised due to major dental problems.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

um...the dentist could have refered the individual to a hospital to do an extraction done, just like getting wisdom teeth out. Now don't get me wrong, maybe a root canal or bridge would have been the prefered treatment but spending $75 for an extraction would have just as easily saved this persons vision...

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Definitely a problem with communication in this case.

Anonymous said...

In Ontario OHIP will cover dental treatments if the problem will affect the health of the patient.

I mean, this was an infection, a doctor could have perscribed an anti-biotic and been paid for by OHIP.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

The dentist probably should have done a better job explaining all this to Mr. Han, and following up to make sure he was o.k.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Dental care is far too efficient in Canada. We should all wait 5 hours for that too.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Better 5 hours than not at all.

Anonymous said...

For information purposes, there are dental clinics at the Universities across Canada that will do dental work performed by the students. It's monitored in detail by their professors, dentists of course. There is also an emergency dental clinic at the Mount Sinai Hospital in downtown Toronto...plus....there are dentists around who will do the necessary work - as in infected tooth- and make a payment arrangment, even if it's a small amount per month.

raz

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Thanks, Raz. That's good info to know. There are actually a lot of retired folks who have no dental coverage and would likely benefit from knowing this.

PGP said...

It's complete BS!
FACT - when a person has an infection that prevents dental work to proceed they are sent to seek medical assistance for the infection. This is a requirement and the dentist are obliged to follow it!
If this person had gone to a hospital or clinic to have the infection investigated they would have been treated!
Ant surgery required would have been taken care of.