Ontario Changing OHIP Coverage For Vitamin D Testing
Ontario is following the advice of experts and will be funding vitamin D testing for patients where medical evidence indicates that there is a need.
Beginning December 1, the Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) will cover the costs of a vitamin D test for people with the following conditions:
- Osteoporosis and Osteopenia
- Malabsorption Syndromes
- Renal Disease
- Patients on medications that affect vitamin D metabolism.
In June, Ontario's Health Technology Advisory Committee concluded that the routine use of vitamin D testing for the general population could not be justified based on current evidence, and that people should follow Health Canada's recommendations on diet and vitamin D supplementation.
Since 2004, vitamin D testing has grown by 2,500 per cent - jumping from 29,000 tests to more than 700,000 in 2009.
The change in vitamin D testing will result in resources being redirected to other laboratory services.
- This year, it is expected that the Ontario government will be billed up to $66 million on vitamin D tests - compared to $1.7 million 2004
- Manitoba, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island and Saskatchewan have all moved to limit unnecessary vitamin D testing.