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The Larger Picture – auto insurance, flu shots and dental benefits for the kids

Auto insurance in Ontario

Ontario’s auditor-general says our province still has the highest auto insurance rates in Canada, despite having one of the lowest rates of car crash injuries and the government has done little to stem the increases.

In her latest report, Bonnie Lysyk says insurance rates rose an average of 14 percent between 2017 and
2021, despite government pledges, to change the system.

Lysyk says little has been done to implement recommendations from a 2017 government study that found that our province’s auto insurance system is one of the least effective insurance systems in Canada.

Children’s flu vaccinations

Health experts from Ontario’s four largest children’s hospitals are urging parents to get their children under the age of five vaccinated against the flu and COVID-19.

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With the number of children suffering from respiratory viruses causing immense pressures on the hospital system, they say it’s critical that as many young children as possible be inoculated before the arrival of the Christmas holiday season.

They note that those under five have the greatest risk of hospitalization from COVID-19 of any children’s age group.

Dental benefits for children

Beginning today, low- and middle-income parents can apply for federal benefits to cover dental costs for children under the age of 12.

It’s the first stage of a program designed to establish a national dental care insurance scheme drafted by the Liberal government as part of their deal with the New Democrats to ensure their support.

The program applies to families earning less than 90 thousand dollars a year who don’t have full dental benefits for their children from other programs.

It will be applied on a sliding basis up to 650 dollars for family incomes of less than 70 thousand dollars, to 260 dollars per child in families where the income is just under the 90-thousand-dollar threshold.

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