Can You Help Us Save Eye Care?

In this blog post we explain what is happening, how funding from the Ontario Government has changed since the 1990s, and how you can take action. If you have any questions about the upcoming Optometrist job action, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Source: Wikimedia

What's Happening?

When our optometrists see patients under the age of 20 or over 65, their full or partial eye exam is covered by the Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP). After more than 30 years of underfunding, the government now covers an average of 55 per cent of the cost of an OHIP-insured eye exam, leaving optometrists’ clinics to absorb the other 45 percent. With more than four million services delivered annually under OHIP and clinics under severe financial strain, the system is no longer sustainable. For further information, read the latest press release.

2021 vs. 1989

An independent study commissioned by the Ontario Association of Optometrists in 2011 found that it costs optometry clinics roughly $70/patient through their office. This means…

2021

A full eye exam for people 19 years or younger: 55% costs covered by OHIP

A full eye exam for people 65 years or older: 55% costs covered by OHIP

One eye exam every year.

1990s

Full eye exams for every age: 100% costs covered by OHIP

One eye exam every year.

Commitment from the Government

Optometrists are asking the government to commit publicly that, whatever the result of the negotiations, optometrists will not have to pay out of pocket to see patients.

Emergency departments are reimbursed 10x more!

The cost to health care if the patient is sent to the ER is about 10x more. Flip that around and the amount paid out to an optometrist is 10x less.

Costs are Up

The government forces optometrists to examine these patients at a loss.  The practice must subsidize 45% of the cost of a full exam and 75% of the cost of a partial (problem specific) exam.

Unsustainable

The current model is unsustainable, especially with the aging population. It is creating an access to care issue.

Take Action

If you are interested in learning more and would like to submit a letter to the Ontario Premier, Minister of Health and your local MPP, use the button below help us protect eye care.

Ontario Association of Optometrists announce job action for September 1, 2021

Did you know that OHIP only covers 55% of our costs?

Did you know that OHIP pays 10x more per visit to the emergency department for an eye problem than to an Optometrist?