(Photo courtesy CareForKidneys.com)

Ford government launches out-of-country coverage for kidney dialysis

Just as the Ford government winds down OHIP coverage for travellers abroad, it is launching a new program providing funding for those living with kidney failure.

Starting January 1, Ontario residents who require kidney dialysis while travelling out of the country will be reimbursed for treatment. The start of the program will coincide with the wind-down of the Out of Country Travellers Program.

The Ontario Renal Network will operate the new program with $700,000 in funding from the province.

“Our government listened to Ontarians on dialysis about the need to preserve and protect their ability to safely travel and work abroad,” said Health Minister Christine Elliott. “This new program to fund out-of-country dialysis services will ensure hemodialysis patients can plan trips confident they can access the medically necessary services they rely on.”

Travel health insurance is currently provided through many workplace plans and credit cards. The Ontario government also encourages residents to buy the appropriate travel insurance coverage should they suffer a medical event outside Canada.

Inside the country, Ontario residents will continue to receive coverage for doctors’ visits or hospital services when travelling in other provinces or territories.