Canadian Thalidomide Survivors Support Program

Important Updates

 

 

The Administrator has a new mailing address:

 

CANADIAN THALIDOMIDE SURVIVORS SUPPORT PROGRAM

PO Box 507 Stn B

Ottawa, ON

K1P 5P6

Thalidomide Survivors Contribution Program Class Proceeding – Notice of Settlement Approval Hearing on February 26-27, 2020. Click
here  for more information.

 

On May 8, 2020, the Federal Court approved the settlement and Class Counsel’s fee request in the class proceeding regarding the 2015 Thalidomide Survivors Contribution Program. The motion for costs was denied.  Copies of these orders and the reasons for the decision can be found at Class Counsels' website at: Thalidomide Survivors Contribution Program Class Proceeding

 

CTSSP Application Deadline:

Step 1 – Preliminary Screening Applications are now available for any living individual who believes that they are a Thalidomide Survivor, including those previously denied under the 1991 EAP or the 2015 TSCP. Click here to download the form or call 1-877-507-7706 (TTY: 1-877-627-7027) to have one sent to you. The CTSSP Application deadline is postmarked by June 3, 2024 to the Administrator.

 

Reassessment:

Confirmed Survivors who are currently at a level 1 or a level 2, may request reassessment of their health status once per fiscal year or more frequently if there is an urgent need. Click here to download the application.

 

EMAF:

There is no limit as to how many applications you may submit as the Administrator has removed the yearly submission deadline date to make the process easier for you. Please submit a new application whenever you wish; however, the Administrator requests that you accumulate $500 worth of expenses before sending in your application unless it creates a financial hardship for you. Click here to download the application.

 

You may also call the Administrator at 1-877-507-7706 (TTY: 1-877-627-7027) or by email to  info@tsspcanada.ca to have any of the forms sent to you by mail or email.

Please refresh your Internet browser pages to see the latest website updates.

 

June 1, 2021

 

Thank you to everyone who was able to respond to the Outreach Survey prior to the response deadline.  The 2020/2021 FY Outreach Survey was completed by 73% of CTSSP Survivors this year, our record response rate to date.

 

Here are some highlights from your responses:

  • 59% of CTSSP Survivors reported that receiving ongoing support payments have impacted them in a positive way in their ability to age with dignity.
  • 53% of CTSSP Survivors who utilized the EMAF indicated that receiving EMAF funding has impacted them in a positive way in their ability to age with dignity.
  • 62% of CTSSP Survivors thought that changes implemented to the EMAF in 2019-2020 were a good idea.
  • When asked if there was anything that they would like changed, 52% of CTSSP Survivors indicated that no changes to instructions, forms and layouts of Administrator’s materials were required, that everything was good as it was.

 

While survey feedback was mostly positive, the CTSSP Administrator reviews and considers all responses to the Survey questions as a means to improve the program and meet CTSSP Survivors needs. As a result of feedback received to this year’s survey, the Administrator will be making some enhancements to the CTSSP program in the months to come.

 

The next Outreach Survey will be issued in February 2022.

 

The next status update will be July 1, 2021.

 

 

 

May 1, 2021

 

We want to thank everyone who took time to complete the 2020-2021 Outreach survey.  As a result of your feedback the Administrator will be making enhancements to both the Extraordinary Medical Assistance Fund (“EMAF”) and to the navigation of the website.

 

Confirmed Survivors will receive more information about the changes of the EMAF by their preferred method of delivery in the upcoming weeks.  If you receive your correspondence by email, please ensure that info@tsspcanada.ca is added to your address book.

 

Next status update will be June 1, 2021.

 

 

April 1, 2021

 

The Administrator has a new mailing address:

 

Canadian Thalidomide Survivors Support Program

PO Box 507 Stn B

Ottawa, ON

K1P 5P6

 

If you recently sent documentation or forms to the Administrator to the address in Waterloo, please be rest assured that your mail will be forwarded to the new mailing address. Although our mailing address has changed, the Administration team and our email address remains the same.

 

On a go forward, please send all mailed correspondence to the new address as listed in the claim form and as posted on the website.

 

If you have questions or concerns, please feel free to contact the Administrator.

 

The next status update will be May 1, 2021


March 1, 2021

 

Recently the annual Outreach newsletter was sent to Confirmed Survivors, if you have not received your copy please contact the Administrator.

 

In the next few weeks, Confirmed Survivors will be receiving the annual Outreach survey. The survey will be delivered by mail and/or email depending upon your preferences.  If you prefer to receive the survey by email and have not provided the Administrator with your email address, please contact us. We would appreciate if you can fill out the survey to assist us in better understanding the impact that the Canadian Thalidomide Survivors Support Program is having on Survivors and to assess how well the program is meeting the needs of Survivors. The survey can be completed and submitted directly from your electronic device or you may complete it and return it by mail or by email. You may also contact the CTSSP Information Line to provide verbal responses to the survey questions.

 

The next status update will be April 1, 2021.

 

 

February 1, 2021

 

In the upcoming weeks, you will receive a copy of our annual newsletter sharing updates and information about the Canadian Thalidomide Survivors Support Program. Following that, you will receive the annual outreach survey requesting your vital feedback about the program. Both will be delivered by mail and/or email depending upon your preferences.

 

Lastly, as we begin preparations to issue the 2021-2022 FY annual ongoing support payments at the end of April 2021, we wish to remind you that you may change the way you receive your support payment by completing an Ongoing Support Payment form. You may download the form from the Forms page on the website or you may request a form by contacting the Administrator. You may choose to have your ongoing support payment issued as one lump sum yearly or have the payment issued to you in twelve monthly installments.  The monthly installments are typically issued in the last week of the month. If you interested in changing the way you are receiving your ongoing support payment for the upcoming 2021-2022 fiscal year, please submit the completed form no later than March 15, 2021.

 

The next status update will be March 1, 2021.

 

January 1, 2021

 

The annual Outreach Newsletter will be issued in February to Confirmed Survivors by your preferred method of communication, by email or mail.  If your preferred method is by email please ensure that info@tsspcanada.ca is added to your address book to ensure that you receive the newsletter.

 

Soon after the newsletter is issued, Confirmed Survivors will receive the annual Outreach Survey to complete.  Your feedback is greatly appreciated as it helps us better understand the impact that the CTSSP is having on Confirmed Survivors and how well the program is meeting your needs. Confirmed Survivors will be able to complete the survey online, by email, by phone and by mail.

 

The next status update will be February 1, 2021.

 

 

December 1, 2020

 

For applicants who have advanced to Step 3 of the CTSSP application process, the Administrator will be contacting the medical practitioner you identified in the signed authorization section of the Step 2 application form to request that they complete a brief attestation form. This attestation request is to verify that the injuries identified in the diagnostic report are an accurate assessment of all your known injuries.  You will be provided with a copy of the letter that will be sent to your medical practitioner. Any costs incurred at this stage will be covered by the Administrator. The Multi-Disciplinary committee will then review the attestation response along with your entire file submitted to date to make its recommendation to the Administrator. The Multi-disciplinary Committee may request additional tests or information to complete the review. You will be contacted if such additional information is needed.

 

Next status update will be January 1, 2021.

 


November 1, 2020

 

As the result of the feedback received from the Outreach Survey, the Administrator has made a few enhancements to the EMAF which include a simplified claims process and the inclusion of additional health services. Confirmed Survivors will receive more information about the changes by their preferred method of delivery in the upcoming weeks.  If you receive your correspondence by email, please ensure that info@tsspcanada.ca is added to your address book.

 

Next status update will be December 1, 2020.

 

 

October 1, 2020

 

For the applicants who are requesting reconsideration, please note that you may request your application to be reconsidered at any point of the Canadian Thalidomide Survivors Support Program application process before the Step 1 – Preliminary Screening Application deadline of postmarked by June 3, 2024.

 

You must complete the Request for Reconsideration Form, which you can find on the website under the Forms page or may request one by contacting the Administrator.  Along with the form we require new information to be provided in support of your request for reconsideration. New information could include medical documentation, reports, scans, x-rays or correspondence not previously submitted to support your Step 1 and Step 2 application.

 

The next status update will be November 1, 2020

 

 

September 1, 2020

 

Step 2 – Probability Assessment Application Determination letters are starting to be sent. Individuals will receive a copy of the report from the diagnostic algorithm with their determination letter.

 

The algorithm yields a probability-based result on a three-point scale of the likelihood that a person’s injuries are the result of maternal ingestion of Thalidomide in the first trimester of pregnancy. It is not a definitive medical test, but a probability assessment. The term “probable” is the highest point on a three-point scale of the algorithm which ranges from “unlikely” to “probable” that a person’s injuries are the result of maternal ingestion of Thalidomide in the first trimester of pregnancy.

 

Individuals with a probability result of “probable” will advance to Step 3, the Multi-Disciplinary Committee Review. The committee will carefully consider the totality of the information related to the person’s CTSSP application and any other evidence the committee considers relevant to make its recommendation to the Administrator. The committee may request that the person undergo a physical examination by a qualified clinician and/or request other testing to formulate its recommendation to the Administrator that an individual is eligible for support under the CTSSP. The costs of these tests will be borne by the CTSSP. The assessment procedure at Step 3 is complex so the process may take time, particularly if we must await test results; however, we will aim to make a determination on your application as quickly as possible.

 

Anyone whose probability result at Step 2 is other than “probable” may request that their application be reconsidered by completing a Request for Reconsideration form and by submitting new information in support of their Step 2 application. The Reconsideration form must be submitted to the Administrator postmarked by the application deadline of June 3, 2024, or the Administrator’s assessment of a person’s eligibility as of that deadline date becomes final. A person must be found eligible at both Steps 1 and 2 to advance to Step 3 as the Administrator has no authority to change the terms and conditions of the Order in Council.

 

The next status update will be October 1, 2020.

 

 

August 1, 2020

 

Confirmed Survivors

 

Physical health and the way we do things change as we age. Confirmed Survivors who are currently assessed at Level 1 or Level 2 may request that their health status be reassessed. If you are reassessed at a higher disability level, you will receive an increase in your annual Ongoing Support payment amount to help you with your changing needs. If you are unsure how to request reassessment, you may contact the Administrator who will be happy to walk you through the process. Reassessment does not require a physical in person medical exam, but the submission of a form where you tell us about your current physical and functional health. Current medical records or functional assessment reports are helpful as they provide the Administrator and its physicians with a better understanding of your current health status. You may obtain the records yourself or you can ask the Administrator to get them for you by submitting a Consent to Release Medical Information form with your Reassessment Application. It is best to submit your application early in the year as changes to your disability level only take effect once the Administrator makes its determination, which depends upon when the Administrator receives the medical records from your health practitioner. Sometimes it takes quite a while to receive your records from your doctor. If a determination is made prior to March 31st of the current year, then the change in your annual Ongoing Support payment amount will take effect in the 2021/2022 fiscal year.

 

Unconfirmed Survivors

 

For the applicants who are receiving their Step 1 -Preliminary Screening Assessment Determination letters and have not met one or more of the three required criteria at Step 1 as defined in the Order in Council, you may request that your application be reconsidered at any time prior to the Step 1 – Preliminary Screening Application deadline of postmarked by June 3, 2024.

 

You must be able to provide new information that was not previously submitted with you Step 1 – Preliminary Screening Application to be reconsidered.  All applicants to the CTSSP must meet all three of the criteria at Step 1 to advance to Step 2 of the CTSSP application process.

 

To request reconsideration, please contact the Administrator to request a Reconsideration form to be sent to you or you may download the form from the Forms page of this website.

 

The next status update will be September 1, 2020.

 

 

July 1, 2020

 

Thank you to everyone who was able to respond to the Outreach survey prior to the survey response deadline.

 

Your feedback is important as it helps the Administrator determine where adjustments to program processes may be beneficial to help Confirmed Survivors age with dignity.

 

One of the areas that we are intending to make adjustments to is the EMAF as most Survivors reported that they would like to see changes to the EMAF, by allowing ongoing treatments, medication and support services. Updates to the program will take time to implement, but changes will be communicated to Survivors as soon as possible.

 

The next Confirmed Survivor Outreach Survey will be issued in February of 2021.

 

The next status update will be August 1, 2020.

 

June 1, 2020

 

For Applicants to the CTSSP:

 

Applicants who are awaiting receipt of their Step 1 Application Review Summary letter may expect the letter by their preferred method of delivery by the end of June if not before.

 

Applicants who are currently completing the Step 2 – Probability Assessment Application should do so with their medical practitioner as detailed medical responses are required to each question.  Responses that lack sufficient detail may result in processing delays as additional information will be needed and requested from you before your information will be input into the Diagnostic Tool.

 

Lastly, the Diagnostic Tool is now available and our physicians are currently familiarizing themselves with its use. Simultaneously, the Administrator has begun to review the Step 2 applications for completeness. You will be notified if more information is required and/or when your file is ready to be input into the Diagnostic Tool. We anticipate starting to input applications into the tool within the next few weeks.

 

The next status update will be July 1, 2020.

 

May 1, 2020

 

The Administrator has recently invited Confirmed Survivors to complete the annual Outreach Survey.

 

We would appreciate if you would spend a few minutes to fill out this survey to help us better understand the impact that the Canadian Thalidomide Survivors Support Program (“CTSSP”) is having on Survivors and to assess how well the program is meeting the needs of Survivors. Only Confirmed Survivors may complete the survey as they Outreach Survey asks questions about the benefits and services specifically available to Confirmed Survivors only.

 

Confirmed Survivors who have provided the CTSSP Administrator with a valid email address received an invitation via email to complete the Outreach Survey electronically. Please check your junk mail folder if you cannot find the invite. Confirmed Survivors who have not provided the Administrator with a valid email address will receive the Survey by mail.

 

You may complete and submit the survey directly from your electronic device (computer, mobile phone or tablet) or you may complete it by mail. If you received your survey via mail and would prefer to complete the survey online, please call or email the Administrator to request a link to the online survey. Surveys completed by mail may be returned to the Administrator by email, fax or mail using any of the contact points listed on the last page of the survey. You may also call the CTSSP Information Line at 1-877-507-7706, 1-877-627-7027 (TTY) to provide verbal responses to the survey questions if that is your preference.

 

All Surveys submitted through the online link will be anonymous. Individuals who wish to remain anonymous, who submit their survey by mail, should list the Administrator’s address in the return to sender area on the external envelope. Individuals who submit their survey as an attachment to an email or verbally complete the survey, unfortunately, cannot be remain anonymous.

 

The deadline to complete and submit the Survey is postmarked by May 27, 2020 at 12:00 a.m. Once the deadline passes, the invitation link sent via email will no longer be valid.

 

The next status update will be June 1, 2020

 

April 1, 2020

 

For Applicants to the CTSSP:

 

The Developers of the Diagnostic tool have not yet released the tool to the Administrator to use.

 

While delivery was anticipated in early spring, this may now be delayed by the unprecedented effects of COVID-19.

 

In the interim, the Administrator will complete its initial review of your Step 2 application to verify that all necessary information to complete the assessment at Step 2 has been received. Please note that additional information may still be required once inputting into the tool commences to ensure an accurate result.

 

We are hopeful the tool will be available soon, but its release is not under our control.

 

The next status update will be May 1, 2020.

 

March 1, 2020

 

We are pleased to announce that CTSSP Step 2 – Probability Assessment Application forms are currently being distributed by email and mail depending upon the recipient’s preferred method of delivery.

 

When completing the Step 2 – Probability Assessment Application, it is very important to provide detailed medical responses to the questions in the application. Subsequently, it is highly recommended that the application be completed with the help of a medical practitioner and that supporting medical evidence such as medical reports, copies of correspondence, x-rays, scans, etc. be included when the application is returned to the Administrator.

 

Also, please provide a copy of valid government identification which includes your date and place of birth when you return the Step 2 application form.

 

The deadline to submit the completed Step 2 – Probability Assessment Application and supporting documentation is postmarked by June 3, 2024.

 

The next status update will be April 1, 2020

 

February 1, 2020

 

Reassessment:

Confirmed Survivors who are currently at a level 1 or a level 2, may request reassessment of their health status for the 2019-2020 FY anytime between April 1, 2019 and March 31, 2020.

 

EMAF:

EMAF applications are now being accepted for the 2019-2020 FY. Confirmed Survivors may submit up to a maximum of two applications per year anytime between April 1, 2019 and March 31, 2020.

 

Ongoing Support Payments:

To change how you are receiving your payments, please complete an Ongoing Support Payments form. You may request the form by contacting the Administrator or you may download a copy of the Ongoing Support Payment form from the Forms page of the website.  You may choose to have your ongoing support payments sent to you as one lump sum yearly or the lump sum may be sent to you in twelve monthly installments throughout the year. Monthly installments are typically issued in the last week of each month.  If you are interested in changing how you are receiving your Ongoing Support Payment, please submit the form no later than March 15, 2020.

 

The next status update will be March 1, 2020.

 

January 1, 2020

 

The annual Outreach Newsletter for Survivors will be issued in February to Confirmed Survivors by each person’s preferred method of communication (email or mail).  If you prefer to receive correspondence by email, please ensure that info@tsspcanada.ca is added to your address book to ensure you receive the newsletter.

 

Following the newsletter, the Administrator will send you a brief survey to complete. Your comments about the CTSSP will help us identify areas in the process where adjustments may be beneficial.

 

You will be able to complete the survey online, via email, by phone or by mail.

 

Next status update will be February 1, 2020.

 

December 1, 2019

 

Delivery of the Step 2 application form to CTSSP Applicants, who have been approved at Step 1, is pending the release of the Diagnostic Algorithm for Thalidomide embryopathy which will be utilized at Step 2 to help assess the probability that an individual’s congenital malformations are consistent with known patterns of Thalidomide embryopathy. It is important to ensure that the information requested on the Step 2 application form will be pertinent to the algorithm.

 

Further updates regarding the status of the release of the algorithm will be posted here as they become available.

 

We thank you for your patience.

 

The next status update will be January 1, 2020.

 

November 1, 2019

 

For individuals who are submitting Step 1 – Preliminary Screening applications, please complete the application form in its entirety. If you previously applied for the Thalidomide Survivors Contribution Program and would like us to review the supporting documentation submitted to the Administrator at that time, please indicate that on the Step 1 Application form.

 

Providing us with as much information as possible about your injuries, including descriptive comments within the application, photographs of your injuries and letters from family members and others who may have knowledge of your mother’s ingestion of Thalidomide are extremely helpful. Medical documents are also helpful, but not required at this step of the process.

 

Proof of identification is required for all claimants.  Legally appointed representatives must provide identification for both the CTSSP applicant and the representative (if applicable). It is preferred that the identification submitted for the CTSSP applicant include the individual’s date and country of birth.

 

The next status updated will be December 1, 2019

 

October 2019

 

Individuals who have already been recognized as Confirmed Survivors under the former 2015 TSCP program may request reconsideration at any time during the 2019-2020 FY if they are currently at Level 1 or 2. Any change to your disability level as a result of your request for reassessment will take effect the following fiscal year.

 

Confirmed Survivors may also request additional funding for home or vehicle improvements or specialized surgeries by submitting an EMAF application. EMAF applications are accepted throughout the year and will be processed as they are submitted.

 

Claimants who have not yet been recognized as Confirmed Survivors under the new Canadian Thalidomide Survivors Support Program may submit an application any time prior to June 3, 2024. For those individuals who have received positive decision letters at Step 1 of the application process, you should be receiving the Step 2 application shortly.

 

The next status update will be November 1, 2019.

 

September 19, 2019

Review of Step 1 – Preliminary Screening applications is underway and it is anticipated that decisions on completed applications will be rendered in writing the near future.

 

If more information is needed to complete a review of an application, the Administrator will contact the claimant by their preferred method of delivery.

 

If you have changed your contact information recently, please contact the administrator so that we have the most up to date information for you.

 

The next status update will be available October 1, 2019.

 

August 1, 2019

 

Frequently asked questions and answers pertaining to the application process for Unconfirmed Claimants have added to the FAQ Page of the website.

 

If you have additional questions, please feel free to contact the Administrator.

 

The next status update will be September 1, 2019.

 

July 1, 2019

 

Effective July 1st, 2019, you may notice that Crawford Class Action Services will have a new name, Epiq Class Action Services. While our name is new, our location and all the familiar voices of our Administration team will remain the same. You may also notice a slight change to our personal email addresses if you email one of us directly. Our personal email addresses will now end in @epiqglobal.com. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Administrator.

 

The next status update will be August 1, 2019.

 

June 1, 2019

 

74 Confirmed Survivors responded to the 2018-2019 FY Outreach Survey. Thank you to everyone who was able to respond to the survey prior to the Survey Response deadline.

 

Some highlights from your responses to the Survey are as follows:

 

  • The majority of Survivors reported that their physical and functional health has declined since the last survey; however, a few Survivors reported their health has improved   and a number of Survivors indicated that their health has remained the same.

  • The majority of Survivors reported that they use their Ongoing Support Payment to fund ongoing treatments/prescriptions that are not otherwise covered.

  • The majority of Survivors indicated that the EMAF funding that they have received has been helpful in their ability to age with dignity.

  • The majority of Survivors believe that increasing the EMAF cap by 2% per fiscal year is a positive change.

  • The majority of Survivors who contacted the Administrator by email or by telephone this past year rated the level of service received as very helpful.

 

The CTSSP reviews and considers all question responses in an effort to continuously strive to improve the program to meet Confirmed Survivor needs within the program parameters.

 

The next Confirmed Survivor Outreach Survey will be issued in February of 2020.

 

The next status update will be available July 2, 2019.

 

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