Halton Region is committed to the health and wellbeing of residents and we strive to provide assistance and program supports to those who need it the most. One wonderful support program that helps children and youth (age 17 and under) who may not be able to afford regular dental care is the Healthy Smiles Ontario (HSO) program. HSO was introduced across the province in 2010 as part of the Ontario Poverty Reduction Strategy. A key component of that strategy is a focus on children and youth and providing more health benefits for those in low-income families.
Oral health is a critical part of a child’s overall health. It helps with self-esteem, a sense of well-being, and affects healthy growth and development. So far this year, the HSO program has already helped over 490 children and youth in Halton Region receive regular oral health care from an oral health professional.
The HSO financial assistance program includes a full range of dental services including checkups, cleaning, fillings, x-rays and more to help prevent a problem or to address a small issue before it becomes a big one. Teens can also register for the program themselves.
I encourage families in Halton Region who may need the assistance to learn more about the program and to find out if you or your family qualifies by visiting www.halton.ca/healthysmiles. You can also call the Region by dialing 311.
To learn more about other programs we have for residents who may need additional support or financial assistance for housing, transportation, child care and more, please visit www.halton.ca/socialassistance.
As always, if you have any Regional concerns or comments you would like to share, please feel free to email me at email@example.com. You can also find me on Twitter @garycarrhalton, LinkedIn or Facebook. To receive further updates on Regional issues, please subscribe to my quarterly e-newsletter, “The Carr Report.”