The Canadian Snowbird Association says it is opposed to the Ontario government's proposal to terminate OHIP's Out-of-Country (OOC) Travellers Program. Doing so would lead to premium hikes for private travel medical insurance coverage, says the association.

The program currently reimburses Ontario residents travelling outside of Canada between $200 and $400 per day for emergency inpatient services and up to $50 per day for emergency outpatient services. The Ontario government's plan is scheduled to come into effect on October 1.

The Snowbird association underlines that any resulting increases in private travel medical insurance premiums would not only impact the snowbird community who travel south during the winter months, but it would also affect cross-border shoppers and Ontarians planning family vacations.

"We urge the Ontario government to maintain OHIP's Out-of-Country Travellers Program, which has helped countless travellers faced with unexpected medical emergencies while abroad." said Karen Huestis, president of the Canadian Snowbird Association. "We estimate that this proposal will increase travel medical insurance premiums in the province by 7.5%."