Updated May 2, 2024

On May 1, the federal government announced the activation of the Canadian Dental Care Plan (CDCP). Health Canada has published a backgrounder with additional information on the CDCP.

The application process and eligibility criteria are available on the federal government's Canadian Dental Care Plan web page.

Please note: No proactive action is needed for enrollment at this time, except for filing taxes for the prior year. Eligible Canadians will automatically receive letters inviting them to apply.

Learn more below why you shouldn’t delay dental treatment, and what else we know about the federal government’s program.

Click on the questions below for the answer.

What is the Canadian Dental Care Plan?

Am I eligible?

How much does the CDCP cover? Will my dental care be free?

How do I access the CDCP? When can I get my benefit?

What services will be covered by the CDCP?

Can the CDCP replace my existing dental coverage through work or school?

Will I lose my dental coverage at work when the CDCP starts?

What is the Canada Dental Benefit (CDB)?

Should I wait until I'm eligible for the CDCP to go to the dentist?

My dentist is not participating in the CDCP. Can they still treat me?

Are applicants covered by provincial & territorial programs still eligible for the interim CDB?

It's important that I see the dentist, but I can't afford to. What options do I have?

What does the BCDA think of the CDCP?

BCDA gratefully acknowledges the Ontario Dental Association for providing the original content used as a reference for the above FAQ.

Additional Canada Dental Benefit Resources

Canada Dental Benefit Factsheet Download and print this 11"x17" factsheet (PDF, English) from Health Canada on your printer. It outlines the main aspects of the benefit in an easy-to-understand graphic. Also available in these languages:

Your dentists advocating for a successful and sustainable CDCP

Checklist and Overview: A Proposed Framework for the Canadian Dental Care Plan

Dentists know what makes a good dental care program

Dentists across the country share a common goal: to promote optimal dental and oral health for all Canadians. The Canadian Dental Care Plan (CDCP) is an historic opportunity to give all people in Canada increased access to dental care. If done right, the CDCP could be one of Canada’s greatest achievements in public health.

As the experts in oral health – and the healthcare providers who deliver dental care – we know what a good dental program should look like, and we want to help the federal government make the CDCP a success.

That is why dental associations across Canada came together to develop A Proposed Framework for the Canadian Dental Care Plan (PDF). It is a comprehensive and actionable framework for a strong dental and oral health care program based on data, research, and input from dental experts.

A successful CDCP should (click headings to expand):

☑ Safeguard your access to dental care by respecting the current workplace, school and/or group dental insurance system.

☑ Allow you to choose your own dentist in your community.

☑ Ensure you can access the dental care you need without having to deal with needless administrative delays and red tape.

☑ Work with existing government dental programs so you can get the most out of the dental care you’re entitled to.

☑ Fairly compensate the dental professionals who deliver the care.

In addition to the proposed framework, we urge the federal government to:

☑ Implement a coordinated plan to increase skilled labour for dental offices.

Until the federal government can deliver a strong CDCP, we recommend at least a temporary expansion of an initiative that is already working for Canadians – the Canada Dental Benefit. This is a fixed dollar amount that a patient can use to be reimbursed for dental-related expenses. Nearly nine out of 10 Canadians support the Canada Dental Benefit, and public surveys suggest that most would support an oral health spending account as a permanent solution.

The dentists of Canada want to champion a CDCP that will respect patients, providers, and taxpayers. We all deserve a plan that works.

Download or print the above Checklist and Overview (PDF).