Snowbirds decry proposed cuts to OHIP travellers program

The Ontario government has provoked the wrath of Canadian snowbirds.

The Canadian Snowbirds Association has criticized the provincial government’s proposed plan to cut OHIP’s out-of-country travellers program, which provides coverage to Ontarians travelling abroad. The cuts are set to take effect in October.

The program currently provides between $200 and $400 per day for emergency inpatient services and up to $50 per day for emergency outpatient services.

The provincial government announced the proposed cut Wednesday and gave the public six days to comment on it.

If ultimately implemented, the snowbirds association said the cut would increase premiums for private travel insurance in Ontario by 7.5 per cent.

“We urge the Ontario government to maintain OHIP’s Out-of-Country Travellers Program, which has helped countless travellers faced with unexpected medical emergencies while abroad.” said Karen Huestis, the president of the Canadian Snowbird Association.

At the moment, every province and territory in the country provides at least some reimbursement to residents who require emergency medical assistance while travelling abroad.