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Dr. Adil Shamji, Liberal MPP, Queen's Park media room screen shot, May 29, 2024

Liberals seeks funding model for nurse practitioner clinics

By Randy Thoms May 29, 2024 | 2:53 PM

The provincial Liberals want a public funding model for clinics headed by nurse practitioners.

They say those clinics are now charging patients for services that should be free.

Critic Dr. Adil Shamji is proposing legislation to stop the practice.

“My legislation, which I will introduce today, amends the commitment to the Future of Medicare act, and for the first time explicitly prohibits private billing for medically necessary services provided by nurse practitioners,” says Shamji.

His proposal would also lead to nurse practitioner clinics being brought under the public umbrella, either by publically funding them or exploring other arrangements under OHIP.

“It gives the government six months to decide how to fund them, and importantly, authorizes the government to reimburse Ontarians for any private fees that they have paid to nurse practitioners if the government drags its feet.”

Shami says the refusal by the Ford government to adequately fund nurse practitioner clinics has given rise to outrageous charges and predatory rates for services a patient may not require.

He says some patients have been forced to pay out-of-pocket for things like prescription refills, newborn baby evaluations, and pap smears to detect cancer.

Shamji’s proposal would double the fines for those convicted of breaching public health care and fraudulently billing privately.