Canada has a publicly funded Medicare system that doesn’t exclude immigrants. The system ensured that healthcare is delivered in thirteen provinces and territories. This is as provided for by the Canada Health Act of 1984. However, the health care services provided by the country are available through health insurance schemes according to the provinces. For example, as an immigrant into Ontario, you must be familiar with the Ontario Health Insurance Scheme.
What is Ontario’s Health Care Plan?
As said earlier, provinces in Canada have a unique health care system, but they operate in a somewhat similar manner. Ontario’s health care plan is referred to as the OHIP. It applies to every resident of the province including immigrants. However, you have to ask for it to enjoy the quality of the healthcare services it promises.
When do you apply for Ontario’s Healthcare plan?
You are advised to apply for the healthcare plan immediately you are getting into Canada as a permanent resident. This is because, processing could take up to three months, and during the waiting period, you are not entitled to the use of the healthcare package just yet even as you have applied. You have to wait until your card is ready.
What do you use your card for?
You are supposed to present the OHIP card to the doctor on each visit, emergency, and treatment. It would stand in to testify that you are eligible to use the healthcare service.
What are the conditions and costs covered by your OHIP CARD?
Your card covers for medical visits, surgery, medical tests, other treatments, and emergency.
How do you qualify for the health insurance plan?
Much like elsewhere, Medicare services via healthcare comes with eligibility clauses. To qualify, you must live in the province for 153 days out of your 183 days of the first move to Canada, and the province must be your primary home in the country. These are the essential clauses required. However, after meeting the requirements, you must either be a Canadian or possess a permanent resident of the country as an immigrant. In case you are not, you must have applied for permanent residence to the IRCC. Pending that, you must be able to prove that your request for permanent residence has not been denied.
Without these, you could also be eligible if you have a work permit that belongs to the province, if you are refugee as defined by the Immigration and refugee Canada, if you have a temporary residence of the category that could apply or you belong to religious organization that will be ministering for at least six months in the country.
How to apply?
Book an appointment with Ontario Service Center (or that of your province) and approach the institution with documents that include a complete provincial health coverage form, residence permit, prove that you live in the province with your driver’s license and also prove that you are not using someone else’s identity with your passport or credit card.
Application for children under 16
Photo and signature are not required in your health care. Your parent or guardian would be responsible for signing all documents.
For Children Over 16
Photos are required. They would, therefore, need to appear in person in the provincial service center.
What to Do Before Healthcare Card Arrive
After your application has been filed and approved, you are expected to wait for three months before your cover is prepared. However, we advise that you get some health insurance while you wait; you could contact the Provincial ministry of health for more details.