Minister Khera Highlights Canadian Dental Care Plan in Budget 2023

Employment and Social Development Canada

March 31, 2023 Welland, Ontario Employment and Social Development Canada

Through Budget 2023 - A Made-in-Canada Plan, the Government of Canada is making investments that will support a stronger middle class, an affordable economy and a healthy future for Canadians.

Today, the Honourable Kamal Khera, Minister of Seniors and Chris Bittle, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Member of Parliament for St. Catharines, met with students at the Welland Campus of Niagara College to discuss the new Canadian Dental Care Plan and how it will benefit up to nine million Canadians across the country.

The Minister highlighted how Budget 2023 proposes to provide $13 billion over five years, starting in 2023-24, and $4.4 billion ongoing, to Health Canada to implement the new Canadian Dental Care Plan. The plan will provide dental coverage for uninsured Canadians with an annual family income of less than $90,000, with no co‑pays for those with family incomes under $70,000. The plan is expected to begin rolling out by the end of 2023 and will be administered by Health Canada, with support from a third‑party benefits administrator.

In addition to cost, other factors may also prevent Canadians from accessing the dental care they need, such as living in a remote community or requiring specialized care due to a disability.

Budget 2023 proposes to provide $250 million over three years, starting in 2025-26, and $75 million ongoing, to Health Canada to establish an Oral Health Access Fund. The fund will complement the Canadian Dental Care Plan by investing in targeted measures to address oral health gaps among vulnerable populations and reduce barriers to accessing care, including in rural and remote communities.

Canada has made a remarkable recovery from the COVID recession. Canada's economic growth was the strongest in the G7 over the last year, and today, 830,000 more Canadians are employed than before the pandemic. Inflation in Canada has fallen for eight months in a row, our unemployment rate is near its record low, and, supported by a Canada-wide system of affordable early learning and child care, the labour force participation rate for women aged 25 to 54 reached a record high of 85.7% in February.

Budget 2023 builds on this important progress.

With a responsible fiscal plan that will see Canada maintain the lowest deficit and the lowest net debt-to-GDP ratio in the G7, Budget 2023 will help to build a Canada that is more secure, more sustainable and more affordable for people from coast to coast to coast.

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