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April 28, 2017
Toronto Public Health recognizes new Ontario Children and Youth Pharmacare plan
Toronto Public Health commends yesterday's provincial funding announcement regarding the creation of a pharmacare plan for Ontario's children and youth. The program makes life more affordable for residents by introducing free prescription drug coverage for those aged 24 and under.

"This action is an important step by the province to improve the health of our community," said Councillor Joe Mihevc (Ward 21 St. Paul's), Chair of the Board of Health. "The new Children and Youth Pharmacare plan will help to improve the health of some of our most vulnerable residents. It is my hope that this program is a step towards ensuring that pharmacare will be available to all Ontarians in the future."

A 2012 Canadian study estimated that every year, two-thirds of Canadian households have out-of-pocket expenses for prescription drugs.

"Children from lower income families are more likely to experience poor health in childhood and later in adulthood. This program will provide much needed access to important prescription medicine," said Dr. Eileen de Villa, Toronto Medical Officer of Health. "I'm pleased with yesterday's announcement as it will translate into concrete support for families, which in turn will help reduce health inequities to improve the health status of our population."

In 2015, the Board of Health and City Council called for the introduction of a national pharmacare strategy. At the time, the provincial government was identifying ways to provide health benefits for children and youth in low-income families to ensure access to services outside of publicly-funded health care, including prescription drugs.

More information on the Board of Health report is available at

Toronto is Canada's largest city, the fourth largest in North America, and home to a diverse population of about 2.8 million people. It is a global centre for business, finance, arts and culture and is consistently ranked one of the world's most livable cities. In 2017, Toronto will honour Canada's 150th birthday with "TO Canada with Love," a year-long program of celebrations, commemorations and exhibitions. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can visit, call 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or follow us on Twitter at and on Instagram at

Media Contact
Lenore Bromley
Toronto Public Health



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