Healthcare Insurance & Coverage for Newcomers in Canada

Sources of Insurance and Coverage:

In Canada, all permanent resident refugee categories have medical coverage through two main sources:

  • The provincial health program, in Nova Scotia for instance, this is through MSI
  • The Interim Federal Health Program

Provincial Coverage

In each province, newcomers with PR status are eligible to apply for provincial health cards. In Nova Scotia for instance, this would’ve through Medavie Blue Cross. It is also important to consider eligibility of the provincial Pharmacare programs and their requirements.

Interim Federal Health Program
The Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP) is a federal health program that offers newcomers who have come as refugees health insurance for the duration of their first year of settlement. Some applications can be made in extenuating medical cases to have the duration of IFHP however the process is unclear.

What is covered?

IFHP is meant to act in lieu of a health insurance plan for one year. There are a few grids to guide providers in understanding what is covered and can be found in the following links:

  • IFHP – Basic Coverage
  • IFHP – Supplemental Grid
  • Dental
  • Drug Coverage

This is meant to support newcomers with financial access to healthcare and medical supplies that are not covered provincially (e.g. wheelchairs, canes, walkers, briefs, incontinence supplies etc).

In order for a client to receive items covered through IFHP, a vendor Registered with IFHP must submit the claim.

Other Resources: