BVA Blog

Medical Expenses on your Personal Tax Return

Monday, March 07, 2016

Medical Expenses on Your Personal Tax Return

We are often asked what medical expenses can be deducted on a personal tax return. The Canada Revenue Agency has detailed listings on all things that can or cannot be included. Below is a summary of the most common items we see.

Common items that can be included in your personal tax return:

  • Health plan premiums paid directly by you or your spouse or are included as a taxable benefit in your income
  • Contact lenses and glasses
  • Laser eye surgery
  • Acupuncture and Chiropractic services
  • Orthopedic shoes, boot and inserts (has to be prescribed by a doctor)
  • Tutoring services for a person with a learning disability or an impairment in mental functions (certification in writing needed)
  • Prescriptions (that you are not reimbursed for with a health plan)
  • Dentistry
  • Dentures
  • Medical travel >40km if the service is not available in your area

Common items that cannot be included in your personal tax return:

  • Athletic or fitness club fees
  • Massage
  • Blood Pressure monitors (even with a prescription)
  • Health plan premiums that are paid by your employer and are NOT included in your income
  • Cosmetic surgery
  • Over the counter medications (Aspirin, cough medicine, etc.)
  • Supplements and vitamins
  • Crutches

The above list is only a small portion of the allowable and non-allowable medical expenses. It is important to note that if you are receiving payment back from a health insurance plan, or the items are direct billed to your health care plan, you cannot also claim them on your tax return. However, if you only get a portion covered with your health plan, if it is an eligible expense, you can claim the actual net amount you paid.

For a complete list of eligible medical expenses, you can visit the CRA website at: or you can call our office for guidance.

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Medicine Hat, AB Canada

T1A 8G6

Phone: 403‑527‑8114

Fax: 403‑526‑0908


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