May 13, 2022 – Ottawa, ON: Today, the Canadian Dental Association (CDA) brought remarks to The House of Commons’ Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs (the Committee). With the Committee studying Administration and accessibility of Indigenous Peoples to the Non-Insured Health Benefits (NIHB) Program, CDA focused its discussion on three recommendations with respect to oral health and the dental component of the NIHB program.

As part of its scope of work, CDA uses its national voice to raise issues and concerns facing the dental profession. CDA has long advocated for investments in Indigenous oral health and access to dental care and has been collaborating for more than a decade with officials administering the dental component of the NIHB program, including providing technical advice on its administration. CDA’s key recommendations in relation to the Committee’s study include:

  • calling for better access to facilities where dental treatment can be performed under general anaesthesia;
  • conducting a comprehensive review of the administration of dental coverage to ensure that any pre-authorization requirements are in line with best practices of other dental programs, both private and public; and
  • developing, in partnership with Indigenous governments and other relevant stakeholders, an oral health investment strategy to improve the oral health of Indigenous communities.

View Dr. Tomkins’ complete written remarks. View recording of the Indigenous and Northern Affairs Committee meeting [see play point 13:03:20 for CDA’s appearance, Question 1) at 13:40:35, and Question 2) at 13:41:28].