During question period Monday, Guy Bourgouin, NDP MPP for Mushkegowuk—James Bay, called on the Ford government to update the Northern Health Travel Grant to keep up with the rising cost of gas and accommodation.
“The Northern Health Travel Grant hasn’t been revised in years,” Bourgouin said. “With the rate of inflation, the current program doesn’t cover the cost of gas, let alone a hotel room for residents of Northern Ontario travelling for medical care.”
Bourgouin said increasing the grant, as well as changing the reimbursement formula, would help offset the cost of medical travel for northern Ontario residents.
“Patients travelling from northern Ontario to other parts of the province for medical care are left paying out of pocket for their expenses or racking up credit card bills. Many seniors and residents with lower incomes live paycheque to paycheque; sadly, some people must cancel their appointments altogether because they simply cannot afford the travel expenses.
“Doug Ford must revise the program to ease the financial burden on northern Ontario families.”
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