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Health Insurance and Medical Care Options for International Students in Canada

Health insurance and medical care options for international students in Canada are of utmost importance. Canada has a well-established and comprehensive healthcare system. As a student, you will have access to a range of health insurance and medical care options.

What are the health insurance requirements for international students?

All international students in Canada are required to have health insurance coverage while they are studying in the country. The Canadian government requires students to enroll in a provincial health insurance plan, which is usually provided by the province or territory where they are studying.

In some cases, international students may be able to opt out of the provincial health insurance plan if they have a valid equivalent health insurance plan from their home country. It is important to check with your institution and the health insurance provider if the option is available to you.

Students in Canada without PR or citizenship should expect to pay for medical services unless they have private health insurance. If you are planning to study in Canada for 6 months or more you are eligible to apply to the Medical Services Plan (MSP).

What are the health or medical insurance options in Canada?

International students have access to a wide range of medical care options, including walk-in clinics, emergency rooms, and hospitals. Some universities also offer on-campus health clinics, which provide basic medical services to students. International students can also access specialized medical care, such as dental, eye care, and mental health services.  Provincial health insurance may not cover these services, it requires payment or additional insurance coverage.

Some of the health insurance and medical care options for international students in Canada, specifically in the province of British Columbia are:

Medical Services Plan (MSP)

MSP is the provincial insurance program that pays for required medical services. These include medically necessary services provided by physicians and midwives, diagnostic services including x-rays, dental care and oral surgery performed in a hospital, eye examinations if medically required and some orthodontic services.

Check out the services covered by the MSP on the British Columbia website.

GuardMe International Insurance

Another option that you have is while waiting for the MSP, you can be covered by GuardMe, which is a temporary student health insurance coverage to cover you while you wait for your MSP to start (three months after your arrival in British Columbia).

Included will be the cost of GuardMe in your first term tuition. Additionally, you will receive an email containing your GuardMe card; this card contains your policy/certificate number. However, GuardMe only covers new, emergent injuries and illnesses (this is why it is temporary).

If you want more information about GuardMe, please check out their website.

Also, if you want more information about health insurance and medical care options for international students in Canada, please go to the medical insurance section on the Acsenda website.

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