Health Canada says people in Saskatchewan will have to use a website to learn about their health care coverage in a few weeks.
The province announced Thursday it is scrapping the province’s current online Health Canada portal and instead will build a new one, called the Saskatchewan Health Information Portal, that will provide more information about insurance and coverage, said Michelle O’Connor, an agency spokeswoman.
O’Connor said the portal will be available in late spring or early summer, and is expected to cost $250,000.
The move comes after the province announced earlier this month that it will stop using the Health Information Centre, which was created in 2012 to provide information about health insurance coverage and to offer a portal for health care providers to find and access that information.
The agency also said it is cutting off the Health Canada website in July 2019.
The portal is used by nearly 1.5 million people in the province.
Oddly, O’Brien said the new portal will also be easier to navigate for people who have limited or no internet access.
The agency is also adding an app for people with disabilities.
In addition to offering a website, the new Health Information Portals will also include the following features:• Access to Health Canada’s Medicare and Social Security information, including information on payment options and eligibility for benefits.• More details about the benefits and benefits coverage available to individuals and families.• Information about health services and services available to Canadians with disabilities and people living with disabilities, such as prescription drug plans.• A listing of the services and benefits that are available in the Saskatchewan health system, including medical and dental care, emergency and crisis response services and social assistance.• An overview of how to access health services, including mental health, emergency room and ambulance services.
Overnight changes will be made to Health and Social Development Canada’s website in 2019 to provide more timely updates about the state of health care in Saskatchewan, O”Connor said.
Health Canada also said the province is removing the province-wide health information portal, which launched in June 2018.
The portal was created to help people understand the services they can get from Health Canada, and was intended to be a place to see how the agency is providing care to the province, she said.
The site is still accessible through a variety of ways, including through the Health Insurance Marketplace.
O”Connor did not give a timeline for when the site will be back online.