The future of vision is unclear

Dear editor,

This email comes to you with great concern about eye care in Ontario. I was completely shocked when I called to book an appointment with an optometrist today.

I am 58 years old and have worked since I was 15 years old. I paid into a benefits program since 1996 until my health forced me to stop. My health coverage ended when I went on permanent disability so now I have OHIP or medical services to cover my health care expenses.

I called the optometrist today to see about getting my eyes tested as I am diabetic and have not had anyone look at my eyes for a few years now. I realize that COVID was a big part of the reason but I need help as my eyesight is not good.

When I called today, I was told that because I am diabetic and have OHIP that there is no optometrist in Ontario that will see me. I even offered to pay for the appointment myself and was told that if any optometrist seen me, they could be charged and given a hefty fine.

I don’t know what the differences are between the government and the optometrists, but for the sake of my eyesight and the eyesight of many other people in Ontario, this needs to stop. I need my eyesight to help me through my day to day life. I need my eyesight to help me write. I need my eyesight to help enjoy the beautiful place we live. I need my eyesight. I NEED MY EYESIGHT!

Show me and other diabetic Ontario residents that we matter and do something to change this. Please do it now while I can still see.

Joanne Bruyere