Many Canadians across the nation are not as fortunate. Dental care is not included in Canada's universal health system and many suffer because of it. Especially people from a low-socioeconomic status background.
Canadians pay for dental care in four different ways. The first is through third-party insurance, second through private dental insurance, third is by paying directly out-of-pocket; and lastly through government-subsidized programs. The vulnerable group who face the hardest struggle are families from low income. With that said, pediatricians and family doctors play an important role in knowing which child is at an increased risk for dental disease. They also have a role in advocating for more comprehensive and universal dental care for all families but especially those in need.
The Canadian Oral Health Strategy (COHS) was developed by the Federal, Provincial/Territorial Dental Working Group in 2004. It was created to make goals and strategies for oral health promotion, access, and surveillance for oral health. Thanks to the development of COHS, many provinces have made changes in their policies for children from low-socioeconomic backgrounds. However, it’s important to note that programs in each province vary in what they cover. Also important to know is that while COHS is helping, it has still left many vulnerable people without dental coverage.
Rowean-Legg, A. (2013, January 11). Oral health care for children-a call for action. doi:18(1):37-43 Retrieved from: http://www.cps.ca/documents/position/or al-health-care-for-children
Welsh, Moira. (2007, June 23). He has a new smile; system still in decay. Toronto Star News. Retrieved from http://www.thestar.com/news/2007/06/23/h