University of Windsor students are asking why they have to pay into the student health plan after the Ontario government started covering prescription drugs for people under 24 this year.
Beginning January 1st OHIP+ began covering fees for over 4,400 drugs that are listed on the Ontario Drug Benefit (ODB) program website.
The UWSA’s General Manager, Maria Hamilton, says the student union’s health and dental plan cover a lot more than prescription drugs.
The alliance runs a self-insured model, meaning it pays out of pocket for any expenses incurred past the $290 student fee as long as the drug is listed on the ODB.
“I want to reiterate again and again it’s not just about medication. A lot of students are thinking because OHIP is paying for health, that they shouldn’t have to pay into their plan.” Hamilton says the plan has broad coverage in comparison to OHIP+ “when students think health they only think it’s for medication but that’s not all it is. It’s your vision, your chiropractic visits, massage therapy, dental, and even travel insurance.”
She says it is rare to find a plan that includes travel insurance, “let’s say you were to travel to the states and need medical help, that covers it, or anywhere, it covers it.”
Until recently the UWSA was covering drugs that were not on the ODB and it was coming out of the health and dental budget.
It is unclear why the alliance originally decided to cover those drugs but former VP of Student Advocacy and UWSA Board Facilitator Matthew Dunlop says the decision most likely occurred “when the executives could have been looking at the values and morals of the student union” and they decided to cover specific all medications for the students.
Hamilton says the UWSA is willing to work with students to create a solution for any issue that may arise. “If students have concerns regarding this I recommend they come to the UWSA office to discuss it.” She says if a student has had a drug covered in the past and can prove it the UWSA will grandfather the coverage.
If you want to find more details about what medications are covered visit studentcare.ca and search the University of Windsor.
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