Student Health Insurance Across Canada

Last updated: 23 May 2022

Canada Visa Study Health Insurance R

Health insurance policies vary from province to province. This CanadaVisa page gives you an overview of the various provincial policies.

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Table of Contents


Overview

Students planning to study in Canada should research the availability of insurance in their intended province of study. International students in Canada are required to obtain health insurance for the duration of their stay in Canada. Certain provinces offer provincial health coverage to certain international students, either for free or for a premium. In these cases, international students are usually required to apply to the province.

Often, in cases where provincial health insurance is not available, students are required to purchase private insurance. This can often be done through their school in Canada. Institutions in provinces which do not offer provincial healthcare coverage to international students may require these individuals to subscribe to mandatory health plans, while other institutions may offer optional coverage plans.


Chart of Health Insurance Policies in Canadian Provinces 

Province
Provincial coverage for international students?
Basic requirements
Further information
Alberta
Yes

Minimum 12 month study permit

Minimum 12 month residence in Alberta

Holders of study permits for more than three months and less than 12 months may be eligible if they can show their intention to reside in Alberta for at least 12 months.

Students under 18 must be added to a parent or guardian’s insurance.

Must apply within 90 days of arrival in Alberta.
British Columbia
Yes
Minimum six month study permit
Coverage begins after three months. International students are advised to apply immediately upon arrival; coverage begins on the first day of the third month following. For example, if a student arrives on August 25, his or her coverage would begin on November 1. International students should seek coverage for those three months.
Manitoba
Yes

Minimum six month study permit

Minimum six month residency per calendar year
 
New Brunswick
Yes
Minimum 3 months residence in New Brunswick.

International students are required to provide the following:

  • proof of enrolment in full-time studies at a New Brunswick post-secondary institution;
  • valid study permit; and
  • date of arrival in New Brunswick.
Newfoundland and Labrador
Yes
Minimum 12 month study permit
 
Northwest Territories
Yes
Minimum 12 month study permit
 
Nova Scotia
Yes
Minimum 12 month study permit
Student can apply for coverage the first day of the thirteenth month following the date of arrival in Nova Scotia as a student. The student must not have been outside the province for more than 31 consecutive days.  A student arriving in Nova Scotia in July cannot apply until August of the following year. For continuous coverage, a copy of each study permit must be submitted to Nova Scotia Health Card (MSI) and a declaration must be signed each year.
Ontario
No
 
Most Ontario universities participate in the University Health Insurance Plan (UHIP). International students at participating institutions must enrol in this plan, unless otherwise exempted.
Prince Edward Island
No
 
International students are required to obtain private insurance. Institutions may offer their own coverage plans, which may be optional or mandatory. Consult the institutions for further information.
Quebec
No, with exceptions
 

Students from Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Greece, Luxembourg, Norway, Portugal and Sweden may be eligible due to bilateral agreements between Quebec and their country.

Some student scholarships in Quebec include provision of health insurance.

Unless otherwise exempt, international students are required to obtain private insurance. Institutions may offer their own coverage plans, which may be optional or mandatory. Consult the institutions for further information.

Saskatchewan
Yes
Study permit and proof of full-time enrollment
 
Yukon
No
 
 

Contact the Cohen Immigration Law Firm for Assistance

Do you need assistance studying in Canada? The Cohen Immigration Law Firm can help. Cohen Immigration Law offers over 45 years of Canadian immigration expertise.

Please contact us to schedule a free telephone consultation with one of our lawyers.

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