You can visit a nurse or a doctor for a prescription of different types of birth control including the birth control pill, patch, injection, IUD, or vaginal ring. If you’re between 14 to 25, you can go to the walk-in hours of Head & Hands near Vendome metro station to get a prescription. If you’re over 25 or if that’s too far for you, you can find a CLSC or a clinic close to you by calling 811 or searching on sante.gouv!
Which birth control option is right for me?
Before going to see your doctor, it always helps to think about your birth control options. You can research different options and then go to your appointment with specific questions and ideas.
How old do I need to be to get birth control? Do my parents need to know?
If you’re 14 or over, you don’t need your parent’s or guardian’s permission to get birth control. Doctors and nurses also aren’t allowed to tell them if you do. When you see a nurse or doctor you can ask them about their policies around confidentiality to know your rights. Some clinics will ask you if it’s okay to leave phone messages at the contact number they have on file. If they don’t, then you can ask them to make a note in your file about calls.
If you’re using your parent’s private insurance plan, they will be able to see your prescriptions and appointments.
Check here to know more about at what age you can get birth control without your guardians knowing.
How much does birth control cost if…
I’m on my parent or guardians’ insurance?
For people who are under 18 and whose parents or guardians are on RAMQ insurance and the Public Prescription Drug Insurance Plan, Hormonal methods like the pill, NuvaRing, and the patch are free. If you’re unmarried, 18-25, going to school full-time, and living with your parents, you can also get these for free if your parents are on the public drug plan.
If your parents or guardians have private insurance, you may be able to use their insurance card. Private insurances will cover different amounts. It’s important to know that if you use your guardians’ private insurance to pay for the birth control, there’s a chance they could see the charge on their bill. But if they use the Public Prescription Drug Plan, it’s also confidential once you’re 14.
I’m an adult with RAMQ?
If you’re not covered under your parent(s) or legal guardian(s)’ plan or private insurance and have RAMQ, you can register for the Quebec Public Prescription Drug Insurance Plan. This plan covers 63% of the cost of many prescription drugs, including birth control pills and IUDs.
This means that when you go to the pharmacy to pick up a prescription you pay 37% of the cost. There is also a $21.75 fee you pay the first time buying prescription drugs each month. The maximum you will pay per month is $93.08.
For example, a hormonal IUD costs about $300 without coverage. So if you get one, you’d pay the monthly maximum of $93.08.
If I’m not from Quebec? Or go to McGill or Concordia?
For Canadians living in Quebec, you can look at your home province’s health insurance to see what they cover. Often, you’ll need to pay for birth control at the pharmacy and then get the money back later.
For university students, you can make an appointment or go to drop-in hours at your university health clinic. A nurse or doctor there will talk to you about about birth control options.
If you’re on StudentCare insurance, it covers some prescription birth control methods (up to 90%). If you’re an international student covered by Blue Cross, it’s up to 100% covered. You can call your insurance provider with the name of your birth control to make sure they cover it before going to the pharmacy.
I don’t have coverage?
If you don’t have insurance, you may have to pay the full price of your birth control. Here are the average costs for some kinds:
- The pill is usually the cheapest. It costs between 20-60$ a month, depending on the brand. The patch is around the same price.
- The birth control shot is usually around 35-45$. It lasts 3 months.
- The IUD is a little bit more expensive upfront. The non-hormonal copper IUD is 60-200$. The hormonal IUD is 300-350$. You’ll need to remove or replace these every 3-10 years depending on which type you get.
If you’re worried about the cost, you can talk to a doctor or nurse about it to find the option that’s right for you!
Emergency contraception, like Plan B, is available at most pharmacies in Quebec. You can get it with or without a prescription. Without a prescription, you will have to meet with the pharmacist to answer some questions and get an explanation on how to use it. You can find more about how get emergency contraception in Montreal here.