Public Information

Assistive Devices Program

Visual Aids

What kinds of visual aids are covered by the Assistive Devices Program (ADP)?

Optical Aids including magnifiers, telescopes and specialized glasses.

Reading And Writing Systems including audio book playback machines, closed-circuit televisions and braillers.

Orientation And Mobility Devices: white canes.

Funding may be available for up to three optical aids, one reading aid, one writing aid, and one orientation and mobility aid.

What kinds of visual aids are not covered by the ADP?

Who can apply?

Individuals with long-term low vision or blindness that can not be corrected medically, surgically or with ordinary eyeglasses or contact lenses (e.g. corrected vision in the better eye is in the range of 20/70 or less).

Applicants must have a valid Health Card issued in their name.

ADP does not pay for equipment available under the Workplace Safety & Insurance Board or to Group “A” veterans for their pensioned conditions.

How do I apply for ADP funding?

You start by contacting an ADP registered authorizer. You can get information about authorizers by calling the ADP directly.

For optical aids including specialized prescription glasses or contact lenses, field enhancement and spectacle mounted low vision aids, you must be assessed by an ophthalmologist or optometrist who is an ADP registered authorizer.

For optical aids including non-spectacle mounted magnifiers, telescopes, binoculars and non-prescriptive absorptive filters you must be assessed by an ophthalmologist, optometrist or vision rehabilitation worker who is an ADP registered authorizer.

For reading aids including audio book playback machines, you must be assessed by a specialist teacher of the blind or rehabilitation teacher or vision rehabilitation worker who is an ADP registered authorizer.

For writing aids including Perkins braillers, you must be assessed by a specialist teacher of the blind or a rehabilitation teacher who is an ADP registered authorizer.

For reading and writing systems including Closed Circuit Televisions (CCTVs) and computer equipment, you must be assessed by a CCTV or high technology authorizer registered with ADP and located at ADP designated centres.

For orientation and mobility aids (white canes) you must be assessed by an orientation and mobility instructor who is an ADP registered authorizer.

The ADP Registered Authorizer will determine your eligibility for ADP funding and help you complete the Application for Funding Visual Aids form.

Where can I get my visual aid?

CCTVs are leased to own through an ADP authorized Equipment Pool. All other visual aids must be purchased through a vendor registered with ADP. Registered vendors bill ADP for the amount it will pay toward your visual aid. They then charge you the remaining amount. We advise you to shop around among ADP Registered Vendors as services may vary.

You may buy the equipment from an Ontario vendor who is not registered with ADP when:

If you purchase visual aid from a vendor not registered with the ADP, you must pay the vendor the full cost of the purchase and submit a completed Application for Funding Visual Aids form to the ADP office in Toronto.

Once funding is approved, you will be provided with an identification number to use for invoicing purposes. The ADP will reimburse you directly for the funding amount approved.

How much does ADP pay for visual aids?

Depending on the devices approved for funding:

If you are receiving social assistance benefits from Ontario Works, Ontario Disability Support Program or Assistance to Children with Severe Disabilities at the time that device is authorized, you may be eligible to receive more funding assistance.

Will my health insurance company cover my share of the cost?

Many will. If you have private medical coverage, check with your insurer or agent.

Can I replace my visual aid if my medical condition changes or my device is no longer working?

If you experience a change in your medical condition please see your authorizer for an assessment of your needs.

If your equipment is no longer under warranty and cannot be repaired at a reasonable cost, the ADP may contribute towards the cost of a replacement.

ADP will not pay for the replacement of equipment lost, stolen or damaged through misuse. You are encouraged to buy private insurance to cover these possibilities.

For More Information

Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
Assistive Devices Program
7th Floor, 5700 Yonge Street
Toronto, ON M2M 4K5

Toronto 416-327-8804
Toll-free 1-800-268-6021
TDD/TTY 416-327-4282
TDD/TTY 1-800-387-5559
Fax 416-327-8192
e-mail: adp@ontario.ca