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Health Insurance

for International Students Studying in Canada FAQ

Is medical insurance mandatory?

All International students are required by law to have medical insurance while studying in Canada. It is the student's responsibility to have adequate medical insurance while in Canada. 

Who can apply?

  • To be eligible for this insurance a person must:

  • be a student enrolled in a school (recognized institute of learning) within Canada; or

  • be a family member living with a student covered under this insurance in the same residence;

  • not be insured or eligible for benefits under a provincial or territorial government health insurance plan.

How does medical insurance work in Canada?

Canada has one of the best universal public health care systems in the world. The universal health care system is administered by each province under its own provincial health care plan and covers visits to doctors, medical specialists, hospital stays and medical procedures. The provincial public health care plans do not cover everything they do not cover dental care, prescription eye glasses, and non-prescription drugs. These non-covered medical expenses can add up however you can purchase private insurance coverage from Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc.    

What are my options and how do I purchase medical insurance?

The requirements for international students differ for each province. Health insurance must be arranged before arrival in Canada. Options include pre-registering in a provincial insurance coverage plan, compulsory enrolment in a university or college health plan, or by purchasing your own private health insurance plan from Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc.

What are the provincial guidelines for medical insurance? 


International students studying in Newfoundland are not eligible to register with the provincial health plan. Private health insurance coverage can be arranged through the institution in which the student is enrolled. Each institution will have an arrangement with one insurance provider with which the student will be automatically registered.

Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia provides mandatory health care coverage to international students. Coverage is compulsory unless the student can provide proof of coverage by a recognized hospital or medical insurance company that can be purchase from Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc.. International students may be eligible to enroll in the free Nova Scotia Medical Services Insurance Plan if they can show proof of having been in the province for more than 13 months.

New Brunswick

International students studying in New Brunswick can acquire health insurance through the university or college in which they are enrolled. Coverage will be equivalent to what the province's residents are eligible for, including doctor's visits, some specialists and limited hospital services. Supplemental coverage which includes prescription medications and dental fees is available from private insurance companies and can be arranged directly with the private health insurance provider by Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc. 

Prince Edward Island

Basic coverage for international students studying in Prince Edward Island is similar to that provided to provincial residents, medical insurance is purchased from a private health insurance company through each university or college. Students may opt out of this basic health coverage if they have their own private insurance. Extended coverage can be added through a private health insurance company plan offered by Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc.


International students studying in Quebec are required to enroll in the health care plan of the university or college at which they are attending. The plans typically cover doctor's visits, some hospitalization and specialized services. 


In Ontario, international students are not covered by provincial health insurance. International students are required to participate in the Ontario's mandatory University Health Insurance Plan (UHIP). Coverage includes basic medical services; additional coverage can be purchased from private health insurance companies.


International students studying in Manitoba for more than six months are eligible for provincial health insurance at a cost. Payment is made is paid by the student to the university along with the payment of tuition.


International students in Saskatchewan are eligible for medical insurance through the province as long as they arrive in Saskatchewan directly from their home country of origin and have not been in another Canadian province longer than three months. Optometrists, dentists, medication and ambulances are not covered. 


Alberta Health Care is available to international students at rates which are paid on a monthly basis. International students will need to purchase separate coverage to offset the costs of dental visits, medication and ambulance services, this coverage can be purchased from Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc.

British Columbia

International students studying in British Columbia for more than six months are required to enroll in the Medical Services Plan. There is a waiting period of 2 - 3 months during which students will not be fully covered. For this period students should arrange for coverage directly with a private health insurance company from Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc. International students with more than 12 months residency in British Columbia can apply for premium assistance.

What are the methods or payment for medical insurance?

When purchasing medical insurance from Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc. all insurance companies accept credit cards some will also accept a cheque.

My educational institution has compulsory medical insurance do I still need to buy additional medical insurance?

The provincial public health care plans do not cover dental care, prescription eye glasses, non-prescription drugs and emergency medical travel insurance. These non- covered medical expenses can add up. However you can purchase private insurance coverage for these non-covered medical expenses and emergency medical travel insurance from Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc.

Does medical insurance cover pre-existing conditions?

Some plans do cover pre-existing conditions please see policy terms and conditions for exact definition of coverage, each insurance company has its own definitions.

When does my Policy Terminate?

Insurance will terminate on the earliest of the following dates:

1. On the date the policy expires

2. If policyholder fails to pay required premium

3. On the date the Insured reaches 70 years of age

4. On the date student is eligible for a government medical plan

5. Date student departs from Canada upon completion of his assignments

6. 14 days after the insured person ceases studies in Canada 

How do I change my address?

Please notify your insurance company as soon as possible when there is a change of address. You may contact the insurance company by email, mail, or telephone. Make sure to indicate your full name, the school you are attending and the certificate number when making a change to your policy.

What is considered accidental dental?

When an injury to the whole or sound teeth due to force or blow external to the mouth and when injury to the teeth is a result of an accident. 

When should I apply for medical insurance?

After you are enrolled in a Canadian college or university and before you arrive in Canada.

Who is Eligible for medical Insurance?

All students, spouses and dependent children who are ineligible under either a Canadian Federal or Provincial hospital and medical insurance plan or the policyholder's other group hospital and medical insurance plans.

Do you have Family or Group Plans? 

Insurance companies provide coverage for families and groups. Please contact Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc. for additional information and rates.

What is the maximum limit of reimbursement?

The total amount payable under the policy for reimbursement differs for each insurance company, please see the policy for exact term and conditions of coverage.

What is covered in Emergency Treatment Benefit?

Injury and sickness are extended to include expenses incurred outside of Canada. Injury or sickness expenses incurred while on a trip outside of Canada will be reimbursed if charges are reasonable and listed in the policy. Benefits are limited to the amount of benefit that would have been payable had such treatment or service occurred in Canada. All expenses must be incurred on a non-elective emergency basis outside of Canada. "Trip" means travel, undertaken by insured person that commences on the date of departure from Canada and continues until the return date to Canada. "Emergency" means unexpected and not preplanned.

Is there any cancellation fee?

In some cases yes, please refer to the policy for exact terms and conditions for cancellation.


Disclaimer: The FAQ  information provided is for general purposes only, we cannot guarantee the accuracy of this information. Each Insurance Company Policy contains the actual definitions, eligibility requirements, benefits, exclusions and limitation on their respective policies. Insurance Policies are subject to change without notice by the Insurance Companies. If there is a discrepancy between the information provided in the FAQ and the actual insurance policy/certificate of the Insurance Company, the policy /certificate of Insurance Company will override. The information provided does not constitute any insurance, accounting or legal advice please use at own risk.

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