I'm from Ontario and OHIP funds fertility. If I get the facts wrong, go ahead and just edit!

OHIP doesn't fund, if you're

  1. 20-64, optometry like annual eye exams.

  2. over 25, prescription medications.

  3. no matter what age, dentists.

  4. no matter what age, Vitamin D tests absent special circumstances. Vitamin D deficient has been shown to cause depression.

Are there any official statements explaining why Fertility treatment is funded ahead of the other healthcare treatments listed?

  • 6
    My edit has limited the question to healthcare funding, dropping the immigration vs babies section. Healthcare priorities are more likely to have sourceable answers than a wide ranging population support/healthcare/immigration discussion.
    – Jontia
    Sep 23 '19 at 9:55

Sort of. The applicable regulations specifically excludes IVF as an insured service except for one narrow circumstance.

Some background:

OHIP decides whether you are eligible for OHIP and whether the Plan covers the health services you are claiming.

You should review the reasons that OHIP gives for its decision, including the relevant sections of the Health Insurance Act. If you think that OHIP’s decision is wrong, you may appeal the decision to the Health Services Appeal and Review Board.

Fortunately, the decisions of the Health Services Appeal and Review Board are online.

This decision from 2003 (and also this other decision from 2013) says:

Section 24 of Regulation 552 provides for exclusions to s.11.2 and subparagraph 23 specifically excludes IVF as an insured service except for the narrow circumstance specified therein:

24 The following services rendered by physicians or practitioners are not insured services and are not part of insured services …:

(23) In vitro fertilization other than the first three treatment cycles of in vitro fertilization that are intended to address infertility due to complete bilateral anatomical fallopian tube blockage that did not result from sterilization.

As to why and how these regulations came about, someone helpfully wrote a thesis which touches on the subject (this quote starts on page 124 -- there's more there than will comfortably fit in a block quote, but I urge interested parties to give it a read)

In Ontario, in vitro fertilization was fully covered by OHIP from 1985 to 1994 as long as the treatment was performed in a hospital setting rather than in a private clinic.


In the early 1990s, Ontario faced pressure from intense economic restructuring and a turbulent political climate. In December 1993, the New Democratic Party (NDP) government adopted the Expenditure Control Plan (Bill 50) that led to much discussion in all major ministries about reduction in public spending. The Health Ministry decided accordingly to amend the Health Insurance Act to delist medically unnecessary procedures. The province thus decided to limit its funding and to cover IVF exclusively for women with blockage of both fallopian tubes, a diagnosis which represents only 1% of the cases of infertility.


However, Ruth Grier, Minister of Health, was more cautious regarding the technology. She argued that Ontario was the only province to fund and that the consensus around assisted reproductive technologies was to proceed with care.

To summarize: Ontario does not fund fertility treatments except in an extraordinarily narrow set of circumstances.

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