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Q1. What changes have been made to the Northern Health Travel Grant (NHTG) program?

A1. In the 2004 Budget, the Ontario Government made a commitment to return the definition of Northern Ontario to what it was prior to September 2000. With the implementation of this budget commitment, the District of Muskoka is no longer part of Northern Ontario, and as a result, residents of the District are no longer eligible for travel assistance through the NHTG program, effective January 1, 2005.

Q2. How does this change the current program?

A2. Prior to January 1, 2005, residents of the District of Muskoka were eligible to receive travel grants. Since travel assistance is only available to the residents of Northern Ontario, the only change is that the residents of Muskoka will cease to be eligible for travel grants.

Q3. When are these changes effective?

A3. These changes will take effect on January 1, 2005. However, applications from eligible applicants for treatment provided between November 1, 2004 and December 31, 2004 will be honoured after January 1, 2005, as long as they are submitted within twelve (12) months from the date of treatment.

Q4. A patient has an application for a trip made in September 2004 that has not yet been submitted? Can it be submitted now and get paid?

A4. Yes, as long as the application is received by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care within six (6) months from the date treatment was provided. The requirement to submit travel grant applications within six (6) months from the date of service was changed to twelve (12) months, effective November 1, 2004.

Q5. Who is eligible for the NHTG program with the new changes?

A5. The NHTG program is designed to help defray part of the travel costs of Northern Ontario residents who must travel at least 100 kilometres one-way to receive medically necessary insured specialist, or designated health facility services unavailable locally. For purposes of the NHTG, a northern resident is a person who lives in Northern Ontario which is currently defined as the territorial Districts of Algoma, Cochrane, Kenora, Manitoulin, Nipissing, Parry Sound, Rainy River, Sudbury, Thunder Bay, and Timiskaming.

Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
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