• News
  • April 04, 2012

A Fairer Drug System for Seniors in Oak Ridges-Markham

McGuinty Government Taking Strong Action to Protect Health Care

The Ontario Government is proposing amendments to the Ontario Drug Benefit (ODB) program to ensure that it is effective, properly administered and providing the most help to those in greatest need.

The Ontario Drug Benefit (ODB) program helps all seniors with the cost of their prescription drugs. All seniors are eligible for the ODB regardless of their income level.

As proposed in the 2012 Ontario Budget, the fairness of the program will be improved by asking the highest-income seniors to pay a greater share of their prescription drug costs, while ensuring that these costs do not impose an unreasonable burden, starting August 2014:

  • For single seniors with income of more than $100,000 the deductible will be $100 plus three per cent of net income over $100,000.
  • For senior couples with a combined income of more than $160,000, the deductible will be $200 plus three per cent of their family net income over $160,000.

Drug costs for seniors in Oak Ridges-Markham below these net income levels would remain the same.

This measure will save $30 million in 2014-15 and help the government better support an aging population through a new Seniors Strategy which calls for expanding house calls, increasing access to home care, and providing improved coordination between hospitals, primary and community care.

Protecting health care for families and seniors is part of the McGuinty government's Action Plan for Health Care and builds upon the gains made in health care since 2003.



 “The 5% of seniors who will pay more for their prescription drugs will help the Province to invest further in home care and community support for seniors. This will benefit seniors in Oak Ridges-Markham who need it most and our healthcare system overall.”

- Dr. Helena Jaczek, MPP Oak Ridges-Markham

 “Our government is making the right choice to ask the wealthiest five per cent of seniors in Ontario to pay more for their prescription drugs. This change will help us to invest in better health care in the community for our seniors and ensure the long-term sustainability of our health care system.”

 Deb Matthews, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care


  • The ODB program helps about 1.9 million seniors in the community and 215,000 seniors and non-seniors living in long-term care homes or receiving home care services.
  • Ontario has reduced the price of most generic drugs to 25 per cent of the brand-name products, saving seniors and families more money on their prescriptions.
  • Ontario’s drug reforms are now saving the province $500 million a year — and this year will save an additional $100 million.
  • The 2012 Ontario Budget commits to a four per cent yearly increase in funding for community care over the next three years.


 Find out more about the Ontario Drug Benefit program.


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