Eye exam coverage in jeopardy

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Editor: I am a senior living in Chatham-Kent and was shocked to hear at my last eye exam that optometrists will stop seeing OHIP insured patients come Sept. 1, unless the government can adequately cover the cost of the exam.

Optometrists currently must operate at a loss in order to provide these services. This means that everyone over the age of 65, under the age of 19, or anyone with certain conditions such as diabetes, glaucoma, cataracts, macular degeneration, etc. will no longer have access to essential eye-care services.

My vision and eye care are extremely important to me so I offered to pay out of pocket for my exams, but my optometrist said they are not allowed to bill OHIP-insured patients for services.

I do not think enough people are aware of this looming health-care crisis in Ontario and must be informed. The government should be grateful optometrists are not expecting a profit and are only asking for the cost of the eye exam to be covered.

I ask the provincial government to make this a priority before Sept. 1 in order to prevent loss of essential services to thousands of Ontarians. If you value your vision and eye health as much as I do, please visit www.saveeyecare.ca and send a letter informing your MPP.

Charleen Malott

Chatham

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