More about the Ontario Drug Benefit program
The Province of Ontario has a program for residents 65 and older called the Ontario Drug Benefit (ODB) program. Below are some frequently asked questions to help you understand what this drug program means to you.
What is the Ontario Drug Benefit program?
The ODB program covers the majority of the cost for more than 4,300 prescription drug products for Ontario residents.1 The program can also help you pay for allergy shots and an EpiPen®, some diabetes monitoring and testing products, some prescribed over-the-counter drugs and some nutrition products.
How do I qualify?
In order to be eligible for the program you must be a resident of Ontario, and must be able to provide a valid (i.e. not expired) health card to your pharmacist. The prescription must also be filled at an Ontario pharmacy.
How do I find out which products are covered by the ODB program?
To find out which products are covered by the ODB program, you can search the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care Formulary online.2 However, the Ministry recommends verifying which products are covered under the ODB program with your pharmacist, doctor or nurse practitioner because some of the information is technical.
The Ontario Drug Benefit program covers a lot of the same medications my RTIP/ARM plan covers. What do I do?
Since the ODB program may cover the majority of your prescription costs once you turn 65, RTIP/ARM offers its members the flexibility to decrease their coverage and change plans at that time. This flexibility protects you from getting stuck paying for more prescription drug coverage than you need.
Call your pharmacist to determine the annual cost of your prescription drugs that are not covered under the ODB program. Use that number to find the coverage that is right for you. At your next renewal you can opt to decrease your prescription drug coverage, therefore reducing your monthly premiums.
- Government of Ontario
- Ontario Drug Benefit Formulary