An explanation of how some pharmacists are scamming the Ontario Drug Benefit Program.

The ODB pays for medications for Ontario’s most vulnerable: children, the elderly and those on social assistance. When a qualified patient fills a prescription, they either don’t pay anything, or pay a few dollars and ODB covers for the rest.

The program costs the province more than $5.4 billion a year.

Pharmacists bill the province every two weeks for medication dispensed to ODB patients and are paid shortly afterwards.

Dishonest pharmacists overbill by tacking extra drugs they never dispensed onto their bills so they are reimbursed for more drugs than they sold. Untold millions earmarked for the sick and needy end up in their pockets.

A Global News/Toronto Star investigation has found a system that struggles to catch fraud and hold those responsible to account.

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