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Financial Planning -> Save Money -> Private extended medical coverage

Private Health Care Plans - Costs May Exceed Benefits

Private health care plans (extended  health benefits) may not be financially worthwhile.  Your basic health care is covered by your provincial medical insurance.  Some provinces also cover a portion of prescription drugs.

If you are considering a private health care plan, ask the following questions:

bulletis there an annual maximum coverage?
bulletis there a lifetime maximum coverage?
bulletare pre-existing medical conditions covered?
bulletare all prescriptions covered, or are some not eligible?
bulletare all dental procedures covered?
bulletare out-of-province costs covered?
bulletwhat is covered besides prescriptions?

If you are leaving your job and wish to keep the same health care plan, it may be possible to continue coverage without a lapse by paying the premiums yourself.  If you have a lapse in coverage, you may not be covered for "pre-existing conditions".  For example, if you are diabetic, any costs related to this disease may not be covered by your plan.

If you already have a private health care plan that covers all your existing medical conditions, if it comes close to paying for itself it is probably worthwhile to keep it, as your health care costs will probably increase as you age.  Make sure you know, however, if there is a lifetime maximum coverage and if so, how much it is.

If your income is low, your prescriptions and some other health services may be covered by a provincial government program.  For links to information on provincial health and drug plans for seniors and others, see our Government Benefits, Programs and Services pages.

Tip:  Know the terms and conditions of a private health care plan before enrolling or changing your plan.

Revised: September 19, 2017

 

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