PSA Test Should be FREE

Winter 2002 CSANews Issue 45  |   Posted date : Apr 12, 2007.Back to list

Bird talk - Le Jaseur
Dear Bird Talk,

A number of years ago I had an ileostomy, which has rendered it impossible for me to have a rectal digital prostate exam and my only hope for a check-up, was a PSA test. While it is not the cost so much as it is the principle, I find that OHIP will not cover this and I must pay for it.

After numerous (unanswered) letters to the Hon. Tony Clements, Minister of Health & Long Term Care and a visit to my local MPP who also wrote to the Minister, I have finally received a reply which is as follows ­ If your physician believes your medical condition requires monitoring with a PSA test because of your Ileostomy, your doctor should note this on his laboratory requisition and you should then attend your local hospital in order to have the blood drawn at no charge.

Further to this I have talked with, but have not had any reply yet, from the Human Rights Commission with my feelings that because a woman can get a mammogram test and is covered under OHIP, a man should have coverage for a PSA test. In discussion with my doctor he feels that both tests are of about equal importance (also noted in your article on page 36 of the fall issue #44 of the CSA magazine). It seems to me that this is Gender Discrimination and I would highly recommend that the CSA pursue this issue.

In closing I would suggest that any member of the CSA should contact the Minister and try to get coverage until such time as there is coverage for all Men.

Yours sincerely,
Jim Cunningham

Response:
We could not agree more! A PSA test should be a standard male screening procedure and we believe it is being withheld due to cost issues, not health issues.

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