Diabetes Canada welcomes the news that the Government of Canada and the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) will return to using the pre-May 2017 clarification letter for Disability Tax Credit (DTC) applications related to Life-Sustaining Therapy. We are also pleased that a representative from Diabetes Canada will be on the newly re-instated Disability Advisory Committee (DAC).
“We look forward to urgent and transparent consultation through the work of the Disability Advisory Committee,” says Kimberley Hanson, director, federal affairs for Diabetes Canada. “We also hope the review process serves as an opportunity to make the application process clearer for those who need to access this much-needed credit and ultimately provides financial relief and fairness for those living with type 1 diabetes.”
Diabetes Canada will be following the ongoing process closely and urges the CRA to act quickly to review the claims of people with type 1 diabetes who are waiting for a response.
Diabetes Canada raised the issues related to changes to the approval process for the Disability Tax Credit after hundreds of adults with type 1 diabetes who were previously approved were suddenly denied. Type 1 diabetes is a 24-7 chronic, progressive, autoimmune disorder that can neither be avoided nor cured. It renders those living with the disease dependent on insulin injections or infusions for the rest of their life, and puts patients at significant risk of complications such as heart disease, kidney failure, amputation and premature death. The loss of the disability tax credit was an additional blow to those living with an expensive, chronic disease. The DTC helps people pay for the medication, devices and supplies that they need to live. Denial of this credit has placed enormous stress and financial burden on these people.
“We would like to thank all of our partners, including JDRF Canada, who helped advocate on this critical issue,” says Hanson. “We are especially grateful to the type 1 diabetes community who shared their stories to highlight the realities of living with this disease. We hope their stories have impressed upon the government the need for swift action in making this credit available in a fair manner that takes into full consideration the advice of health-care providers.”
While we are still reviewing the details of today's announcement, we look forward to continued collaboration and discussion with the government on this issue.
About Diabetes Canada
Diabetes Canada is the registered national charitable organization that is making the invisible epidemic of diabetes visible and urgent. Diabetes Canada partners with Canadians to End Diabetes through:
- Resources for health care professionals on best practices to care for people with diabetes;
- Advocacy to governments, schools and workplaces; and
- Funding world-leading Canadian research to improve treatments and find a cure.
For more information, visit diabetes.ca or call 1-800-BANTING (226-8464).