How do you know if you’re getting enough vitamin D? There’s actually a test that can measure levels of the so-called sunshine vitamin in your blood. The problem is, the vitamin D test isn’t covered by most provincial healthcare plans unless you’ve already been diagnosed with conditions such as osteoporosis and rickets. This week, Ontario has announced that it will also delist (not cover) the vitamin D test for those not diagnosed with the condition.
Vitamin D has become on trendy little nutrient lately as researchers report evidence that deficiency could be linked to everything from cancer to high blood pressure. That may explain the recent spike in vitamin D tests being ordered in Ontario. Vitamin D tests in the province have risen from 29,000 tests in 2004 to 700,000 in 2009, reports CTV. With each test costing $51.70 to administer, covering all those test can really add up for the province. However, delisting the tests could be a controversial move, as some experts believe it is a good way to prevent all manner of diseases. Here’s what one naturopath told the Toronto Star:
‘I think it is premature to cease funding,’ Huff said. ‘In my opinion this is one of the few good nutritional tests.’
On the other hand, some experts argue that there’s not enough scientific evidence that vitamin D is really the cure-all some claim it to be. As an oncologist from Princess Margaret Hospital told the Star:
‘There is a lot of misinterpretation out there concerning the link between vitamin D and non-bone related diseases such as cancer and cardiovascular disease.”
Do you think provincial governments should cover the vitamin D test?