More than 1 million seniors approved for the Canadian Dental Care Plan 

News release

Minister O’Regan announced the milestone and a new cohort of seniors who are now invited to apply

March 6, 2024
            Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario             Employment and Social Development Canada

Canadians deserve to age with dignity. That comes down to the dignity of choice, to affordability, and to good health. Because health isn’t just about years in one’s life, it’s about quality of life. 

Today, Canada’s Minister for Seniors, Seamus O'Regan Jr., accompanied by Parliamentary Secretary Terry Sheehan, visited Kotitalo Assisted Living and Supportive Housing in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario to meet with seniors and discuss the Government of Canada’s work to help seniors age with dignity, including the new Canada Dental Care Plan.

The The Canadian Dental Care Plan (CDCP) recently hit a major milestone when it reached one million seniors who have been approved for dental care coverage – including over 400,000 seniors in Ontario. While speaking with seniors at Kotitalo Assisted Living and Supportive Housing, Minister O’Regan announced that the Government of Canada is now extending invitations to seniors, aged 70 and up, to apply to the CDCP.

People who qualify for the CDCP can start seeing a dentist or other dental care provider as early as May 2024, based on their coverage date. An individual’s coverage start date, the date at which they can begin to access services, will vary based on when the application is received and when enrolment is completed. Expenses made prior to the coverage start date will not be covered.

Before receiving any dental care services, CDCP clients should confirm that their provider is participating in the plan and that services they will be receiving will be covered by the CDCP. The CDCP may not cover the full cost of the dental visit and these costs will need to be paid directly to the provider, following an appointment.

No one should have to choose between taking care of their teeth and paying their bills. The CDCP is going to help make dental care more affordable for every Canadian, including the 9 million Canadians who are estimated to currently not have coverage. 

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“More than one million seniors have been approved for the Canadian Dental Care Plan. This is big. Because health care isn’t just about adding years to your life, it’s about adding life to your years. There’s no dignity in living with tooth aches or old dentures.”
The Honourable Seamus O'Regan Jr., Minister for Seniors

“Over a million uninsured seniors are approved to join the Canadian Dental Care Plan. This is the biggest expansion to Canadian health care in my lifetime, and it’s going to make a big difference in the lives of seniors.”

Terry Sheehan, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Seniors

Quick facts

  • To date, over 1.2 million Canadians have attested for the Canadian Dental Care Plan.

  • Budget 2023 announced an investment of $13 billion over five years, starting in 2023-24, and $4.4 billion ongoing, to implement the Canadian Dental Care Plan (CDCP), making it the biggest government program in generations.

  • The CDCP is administered by Health Canada in collaboration with Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), through Service Canada, and Sun Life.

  • To qualify for the CDCP, you must have an adjusted family net income of less than $90,000, not have access to employer/pension-sponsored or private dental insurance and have filed your tax return in the previous year. 

  • To improve dental care outcomes, the CDCP will help cover a wide range of dental care services, on the recommendation of a dental care provider. Examples of these services include preventive care such as scaling (cleaning), polishing, as well as other services such as exams, x-rays, fillings, removable dentures, and root canal treatments.

  • The Canada Dental Benefit will continue to support families with children under the age of 12 until June 30, 2024. Parents and caregivers will be able to apply for the CDCP for children under the age of 18 as of June 2024. 

Associated links


For media enquiries, please contact:

Hartley Witten
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Labour and Seniors, Seamus O’Regan Jr.

Media Relations Office 
Employment and Social Development Canada 
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