Proper health insurance is important for all Canadian citizens, but many students’ (and their parents’) forget to get health insurance coverage when they go abroad. For many students’, travelling abroad will be the first time in their life when they are not fully covered by their parent’s or post-secondary education plan. Therefore, it is vital that get their own insurance coverage before stepping off of Canadian soil.
Before setting off on a trip, you should make sure that you are sufficiently covered; in the unfortunate event of critical emergency medical treatment, a lack of coverage may end up resulting in a huge medical bill. Even if you only travel as far as the United States, a small injury can incur tens of thousands of dollars in medical costs. To a lesser extent, a small injury outside of your home province while still in Canada could cost additional dollars and complications. Take the simple step of checking with your health insurance provider now.
Some post-secondary education institutions abroad stipulate that each student takes out coverage from that specific institution; however, this coverage is often expensive. If there is the option to waive this cover and choose your own, it is recommended that you seek alternatives, especially if you can get the coverage directly from a Canadian provider. Choosing this coverage could save you hundreds of dollars per year.
Most students’ will require their own medical insurance as soon as they graduate. Even if their provincial health program (i.e. OHIP) continues to protect them for a short time, the medical care that they receive may be limited and should be supplemented by additional coverage to provide for ongoing care.
Whatever reason you have for leaving Canada while pursuing higher education or shortly after graduation, you should make sure that you take steps to guarantee coverage. Speak to a Client’s Edge representative to find the best coverage for your needs.
For more information on health benefits coverage and travelling abroad, please feel free to contact Stan or Sam to discuss your current situation and ways to control these costs while maintaining the plan’s value to employees and their families.