April 27th, 2022

MPPs Andrew and Gélinas call for HST to be removed from psychotherapy services immediately

NDP promises to bring mental health care into OHIP if elected in June

QUEEN’S PARK ­— NDP MPPs Jill Andrew (Toronto­—St. Paul’s) and France Gélinas (Nickel Belt) are introducing a bill to remove the HST from psychotherapy services immediately.

If the NDP is elected in June, Andrea Horwath will move mental health care into OHIP, so all Ontarians would access mental health services with their OHIP card, not their credit card.

“Due to the inaction of multiple governments here in Ontario, residents are still paying HST when they pay to access this health service. That leaves patients and their families who are already frustrated by the lack of publicly funded services farther away from the mental health services they need — 13 per cent farther away,” said Andrew.

“Registered Psychotherapists are the only mental health practitioners in Ontario who are still required to collect HST from clients. It’s time the province respects their work in the same way we respect the work done by Social Workers, Psychologists, Occupational Therapists and other registered health professions, none of whom are forced to charge HST on their services. This bill will be a game changer for community members in St. Paul's managing eating disorders, gastrointestinal issues, and chronic pain among other mental and physical health challenges.”

Gélinas, who is the NDP Health critic, said action on mental health services is long overdue.

“It has been over 10 years since Ontario’s Select Committee on Mental Health and Addictions released its report calling for drastic change to mental health services in our province. Unfortunately, nearly none of the 23 recommendations have been implemented,” said Gélinas. “The demand for mental health services in steadily increasing. There is no excuse for any government to keep barriers to accessing mental health care in place. Mental health is health; you don’t charge HST on a session of physiotherapy and you shouldn’t for a counselling session. This must change, and if the Ford Conservatives can’t, an NDP government will.”

The Bill will be introduced on April 28 and could pass immediately with the agreement of all parties.


“Removing HST from registered psychotherapist services is long overdue in Ontario, and a significant step forward to building up the mental health framework in Ontario. RPs are a crucial component of mental health care in the lives of so many Ontarians and removing HST means removing another barrier to providing our services.”

— Laura Hetherington, Registered Psychotherapist in Toronto – St. Paul’s.

“Access to mental healthcare shouldn’t be a luxury and removing HST from psychotherapy services removes one of the barriers patients face when accessing care. It is an import step towards a patient-centred continuum of care that utilizes the entire spectrum of mental healthcare providers in Ontario.”

— Jane Alway (she/her), MA, Registered Psychotherapist, (cert)OAMHP, President OAMHP - Ontario Association of Mental Health Professionals

"Making Psychotherapy Services Tax-Free Act 2022 is a momentous opportunity for the government of Ontario to make right a glaring inequity in our mental health landscape, remove barriers to mental health care and give Ontarians more choices in their care provider. Registered Psychotherapists (RPs) provide an essential service in our communities and yet, we are the only regulated mental health providers in Ontario who must charge HST."

— Caroline Rosta, Registered Psychotherapist at TherapyHelp.ca