In Canada, each province has its own public health plan for people who live there. So if you have healthcare coverage from out of province when you’re in Quebec, how do you access health services? It depends on whether you’re here temporarily or permanently. There are also some special rules for students.
If you’re eligible for Non-Insured Health Benefits for First Nations and Inuit, you might have other guidelines for claiming. Contact your band council, health authority, or regional Health Canada office for more details. If not, this article can help!
Can I get treated or tested with out of province insurance?
Yes! Some clinics like the Jewish General Hospital will accept people with out of province insurance for free. To get testing or treatment there, you need to get a hospital card from Pavilion E, Room 0014. Then you can register without an appointment between 7:30-10:30am, M-F. It’s also first-come-first-serve, so it helps to get there early!
Unfortunately, at most other clinics you need to pay upfront at your appointment. After your visit, you can submit forms to your home province to get reimbursed. Make sure to ask for a receipt when you pay, and then plan to mail or fax the receipt along with your completed forms. See the chart below for forms from some provinces. If your province isn’t listed, you might need to contact them yourself!
Keep in mind that different provinces have different rules for how long you can take to file your claim (for instance, in BC you need to submit a claim within 90 days, but in Alberta you have 12 months) so make sure you submit on time!
Also, keep in mind that your home province might not cover everything that you would be eligible for through Quebec’s insurance, RAMQ. So, check with your home province health insurance to be sure. Ambulances are often not covered while you’re out of province even when they would be covered in province. That means you might not be paid back if you pay for some services, so check first if you can!
I’m just visiting!
If you’re in Quebec temporarily, you’re probably still covered by health insurance in your home province. You’ll still have that insurance until you stay out of that province for more than a certain number of days per year (the number varies by province).
This means that you’ll need to pay upfront, and get reimbursed by your home province.
I’m an international student!
At McGill and Concordia, international students automatically get Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance through the school. So, unless you’ve opted out of this, you’re covered!
With this insurance, you can go to the clinic at your school and get things like a doctor’s visit or testing free. For things like vaccines, prescriptions, and any services off-campus, you’ll need to pay upfront, keep receipts, fill out some forms, and send them to Blue Cross. They’ll reimburse you for what they cover within a few months.
I’m an out of province student!
Since you’ll be in the province off and on for a few years, you can choose which province’s insurance you want to use. You can submit proof of your “student status” to your home province and keep being covered there. Or, you can apply for Quebec medicare (RAMQ) if you plan to stay in Quebec after you graduate.
If you want to apply for RAMQ, see the next section. If you want to keep being covered by your home province, most provinces need you to let them know that you’re studying out of province. See the chart below for any rules or forms your province has!
Luckily, most student health clinics will submit claim forms to your home province themselves so you don’t have to pay upfront and deal with paperwork. If you need to go off-campus, you’ll probably need to pay upfront.
I’m moving to Quebec!
If you’re moving to Quebec, you’ll keep getting covered by your old home province for a short period (usually 3 months). After you move, you should apply for Quebec medicare (RAMQ) as soon as you can.
You need to either call the Regie or visit an office of the Regie to get a registration form. Then, you need to fill out the application and attach proof of identity documents and proof of residence in Quebec. Depending on where you submit the form you might have to include photocopies of your documents, or just bring the originals with you. Here are more details about how to apply.
Out of Province claim guidelines for each province
|Province||To submit a claim||If you’re a student|
|Alberta||Submit a reimbursement claim within 12 months of treatment to:
Alberta Health, Out-of-Country / Province Claims
P.O. Box 1360 Stn. Main
Edmonton, Alberta T5J 2N3
Fax: 780-422-1958Include itemized statements, proof of payment, and a completed Claim Form for Out of Province Physician / Practitioner Services.
|Contact Alberta Health to make sure you continue to receive coverage.|
|British Columbia||Submit a reimbursement claim within 90 days of treatment to:
Medical Services Plan, Out-Of-Country Claims
PO Box 9480 Stn Prov Govt
Victoria BC V8W 9E7Include all original receipts and bills, including an itemized statement, and a completed Out-Of-Country Claim form.
|Contact Health Insurance BC to confirm that you’re eligible for coverage while studying out of province. You might have to provide documentation from your educational institution proving that you’re studying there.|
|Manitoba||Submit a reimbursement claim to:
300 Carleton Street
Winnipeg, Manitoba, R3B 3M9
Fax: 204 783-2171Include an itemized receipt and a completed Application for Out-Of-Province Health Benefits form.
|Complete a Request for Benefits by Students Attending Out-Of-Province Educational Institutions, attach a proof of enrollment letter from your school, and mail it to Manitoba Health (see left for address). You have to reapply for coverage every year.|
|New Brunswick||Submit a reimbursement claim to:
New Brunswick Medicare/Assurance Maladie du Nouveau-Brunswick
PO Box 5100
Fredericton, NB, E3B 5G8Include an itemized statement and a completed Out-Of-Province Claim for Physician Services form.
|Contact New Brunswick Medicare every year to ensure you continue receiving coverage while studying.|
|Newfoundland and Labrador||Submit a reimbursement claim to Medical Care Plan
PO Box 5000
Grand Falls-Windsor, NL, A2A 2Y4
709 292-4053Include an itemized statement and a completed Out-Of-Province Claim form
|Complete a Application for Out of Province Coverage Certificate, attach a proof of enrollment letter from your school, and mail or fax it to the address on the left. You have to reapply for coverage every year.|
|Northwest Territories||Send the original copy of your receipt to:
Health Services Administration
Department of Health and Social Services
Bag #9, Inuvik, NT X0E 0T0
Fax: 867 777-3197If you will be gone from Yukon for over 3 months, fill out a Temporary Absence Form and send it to the above address.
|Contact Health Services Administration via one of the methods listed on the left to confirm your enrollment and submit a Temporary Absence Form.|
|Nova Scotia||Contact Nova Scotia Health Authority for more information.||Contact Nova Scotia Health Authority for more information.|
|Nunavut||Contact the Nunavut Department of Health for more information.||Contact the Nunavut Department of Health for more information.|
|Ontario||Submit a reimbursement claim within 12 months of treatment to your nearest ServiceOntario centre.
This has to include an original itemized fee statement; proof of payment; and a completed Out-Of-Province/Country Claim Submission form with your name, Ontario address, and OHIP number.
|Provide a proof of enrollment letter to your nearest ServiceOntario centre to ensure you continue receiving coverage while studying.|
|Prince Edward Island||Contact Health PEI for more information.||Contact Health PEI for more information.|
|Saskatchewan||Submit an itemized statement/receipt to:
Claims Unit, Medical Services Branch, Saskatchewan Ministry of Health
3475 Albert Street
Regina SK S4S 6X6
|Complete an Extended Absence Notification Form, attach proof of enrollment in an accredited educational institution, and mail it to:
eHealth Saskatchewan, Health Registries
Regina SK S4P 0J5
Fax: 306 787-8951
|Yukon||If you will be gone from Yukon for over 3 months, fill out a Temporary Absence form and send it to:
Insured Health Services, H-2, PO Box 2703, Whitehorse, Yukon Y1A 2C6
or return it in person to
4th Floor, Financial Plaza, 204 Lambert Street, Whitehorse, YukonThis is where you should submit your claims as well.
|Contact Health Services via one of the methods listed on the left to confirm your enrollment and submit a Temporary Absence Form. You need to reapply every year, and either return to Yukon once a year or submit a letter explaining why you aren’t returning.|
Head & Hands Health Services
Head and Hands is a health clinic for youth ages 12-26 near the Vendome Metro station. They offer free, anonymous STD testing, even if you’re not covered by RAMQ. Head and Hands also has a lot of other services, including medical checkups, getting contraception, transitioning, and more.
They offer a walk-in clinic on most Tuesdays and Thursdays starting at 4:45pm. It’s first come first serve, so it helps to arrive early.
They recommend bringing your RAMQ card if you have it, but you can still see someone if you don’t have it.
Teenage Health Unit – Jewish General
The Herzl Family Practice Center in Cote Des Neiges. They offer psychotherapy and health care for people ages 12-19.
ihaveaplan.ca / studentcare.ca
ihaveaplan.ca or studentcare.ca is a resource for students to check the health coverage provided to them by their university.