Tips For Seniors

More Than 1 Million Canadian Seniors Approved for Canadian Dental Care Plan to Date… from a Government of Canada Press release on March 6, 2024

More Than 1 Million Canadian Seniors Approved for Canadian Dental Care Plan to Date… from a Government of Canada Press release on March 6, 2024


Government of Canada invites potentially eligible seniors aged 70 and up to apply for Canadian Dental Care Plan


The (CDCP) recently hit a major milestone when it reached one million seniors who have been deemed eligible for dental care coverage, helping to ease financial barriers to accessing dental care.


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 Canadians, including the 9 million Canadians who are estimated to currently not have coverage.


Today, while visiting the Seton Villa Retirement Society in Burnaby, British Columbia, Minister of Citizens’ Services Terry Beech, announced that the Government of Canada is now extending invitations to seniors, aged 70 and up to apply to the CDCP, with instructions on how to validate their eligibility by phone.


Minister Beech urged those who have already received a letter to contact Service Canada by phone before April 30, 2024. As Service Canada prepares to open the online application portal for Canadian residents ages 65 and up in May 2024, personalized application codes sent in existing invitation letters for those ages 70 and up will soon expire. If applying after April 30, applications can be completed using the online portal.


Once Canadian residents are approved by Service Canada, Sun Life then enrolls eligible applicants in the CDCP and will send them a welcome package, including information on the CDCP, coverage details, their member card, and the start date of their coverage.


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 must be paid directly to the provider after an appointment.


For more information, visit




“Reaching one million approved applications is a remarkable achievement. It is a testament to our Service Canada staff who are committed to providing seamless, high-quality service. That level of service will continue as we expand the eligibility to more Canadians. Our focus remains on ensuring Canadians have access to necessary dental care services.”

The Honourable Terry Beech, Minister of Citizens’ Services


“One million people have been approved for the Canadian Dental Care Plan. That’s one million people that may have never visited an oral health professional, or can’t afford it and don’t have insurance, but can now get access. More Canadians are signing up every single day. Dental care is critical to overall health and this plan will mean better health care for people all across the country.”

The Honourable Mark Holland, Minister of Health


“Today’s milestone has proven our commitment to providing seniors with access to affordable dental care. Making dental care accessible to all means giving Canadians a higher quality of life.”

The Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Minister for Seniors


“Today, we crossed another major milestone. Since the launch of the Canadian Dental Care Plan, more than one million seniors have been approved for dental care coverage. As potentially eligible seniors over 70 starts receiving their invitations to apply this month, even more Canadians will benefit from access to affordable dental care.”

The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Public Services and Procurement


“As we continue to roll out the Canadian Dental Care Plan, I invite Canadians to file their tax returns. This is an important requirement for this plan, and for several other credits and benefits offered by the government.”

The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of National Revenue


Quick facts


  • As of March 4, 2024 over 1.2 million Canadians have attested for the Canadian Dental Care Plan (CDCP).
  • Budget 2023 announced an investment of $13 billion over five years, starting in 2023-24, and $4.4 billion ongoing, to implement the 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), 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.


Minister O’Regan Outlines How the Federal Government is Helping Canadians Age with Dignity… taken from the  2024 CARP General Meeting  


Canadians deserve to age with dignity. That comes down to choice, to affordability, to inclusions, and to community.


Today, Canada’s Minister for Seniors, Seamus O’Regan Jr., joined volunteers, board members and leaders from the Canadian Association of Retired Persons at their Annual General Meeting to discuss the key issues seniors are facing as well as the federal programs and agreements in place to help support Canada’s aging population.


Launched in December 2023, Minister O’Regan highlighted the Canadian Dental Care Plan (CDCP)—a new federal plan which will help up to 9 million people who don’t have coverage, finally get dental care. Since the launch, more than 800,000 have been approved for the CDCP. Seniors aged 72 and above have been contacted directly about their eligibility and registration, with letters to seniors aged 70 and 71 to be sent in March.


Minister O’Regan also discussed the federal government’s work with provinces and territories to improve health care and long-term care for seniors in Canada. This includes federal investments of $5.4 billion over five years to help seniors across Canada age with dignity, with access to home care or safe long-term care.


Affordability remains the biggest concern for all Canadians. The Government of Canada has taken action to support seniors, particularly those who rely on fixed incomes. This includes the 2022 increase to the Old Age Security, changes to the Guaranteed Income Supplement and the introduction of the grocery rebate in 2023.




“Seniors should age with dignity and choice. That’s a shared value and belief across Canada because of organizations like CARP and their relentless advocacy. They’re changing what aging looks like in Canada.”

Minister for Seniors, Seamus O’Regan Jr.


“Minister O’Regan’s remarks were not only significant but also appreciated by the 225,000 members of CARP who closely follow issues concerning seniors. The thousands who attended both in person and online underscore the importance of the topics addressed. It’s heartening to see the Minister taking proactive steps to address the concerns of older Canadians. Ensuring their financial security and access to adequate health support speaks to our values as a compassionate society. His understanding of the need for support of home care, dental care and pharmacare was reassuring to CARP members.”

Bill VanGorder, Chief Advocacy and Education Officer, Canadian Association of Retired Persons (CARP)


Quick Facts


  • In addition to the Working Together Agreements,the Government of Canada is working with provinces and territories to implement a second bilateral agreement focused on helping Canadians age with dignity close to home, with access to home care or care in a safe long-term care facility. The Aging with Dignity Agreements include $2.4 billion over four years to improve access to home and community care from Budget 2017; and $3 billion over five years for long-term care from Budget 2021 to apply standards of care in long-term care facilities and help support workforce stability.


  • As of July 2022, Old Age Security (OAS) was increased by 10% for seniors aged 75 and up. It was the first permanent increase to the OAS since 1973 and provided full pensioners an extra $800 over the first year. The OAS program paid over $60 billion in benefits to 7 million beneficiaries last year alone, including $14 billion in Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) benefits to 2.2 million low-income beneficiaries.


  • Since 2015, the federal government has taken other significant action to further support our seniors, including:


  • restoring the age of eligibility for OAS and GIS back to age 65 from 67, preventing about 100,000 future seniors from falling into poverty;
  • increasing the GIS by up to $947 per year for the lowest-income single seniors, which has benefitted close to 900,000 seniors; and
  • enhancing the GIS earnings exemption so that low-income seniors who work can keep more of their benefits.


  • The one-time grocery rebate, proposed in Budget 2023 as a targeted inflation relief for vulnerable Canadians, provided $2.5 billion for 11 million low- and modest-income Canadians and families to help support them with the rising cost of living and food prices. On average, eligible couples with two children received up to an extra $467; single Canadians without children an extra $234; and seniors with an extra $225.