|When to apply||After you get or renew a study/work permit (ideally, before your MSP expires)|
|Cost||You will continue to be charged monthly premiums. See the section on implied status below. The application to extend is free.|
|Processing time||About 4 weeks|
By paper; send to:
|Applications form||Not applicable|
|Supporting documents (additional documents may be needed)||
How to extend your BC Medical Services Plan (MSP)
How having implied status impacts your coverage
If you have implied status, your BC MSP will end on the expiry date of your current immigration document and will not be activated until you provide BC MSP with proof of your new immigration document (i.e. a copy of your study permit or post-graduation work permit). You may be eligible to request continuous coverage and a reinstatement of your BC MSP by mailing a written request (a letter explaining your status and your request) and a copy of your new immigration document to BC MSP. If approved for continuous coverage, you will be requested to pay for the monthly premiums for the months in which you held implied status and any medical expenses incurred during your implied status may be eligible for reimbursement only up the fees that BC MSP will normally pay for.
If there is a gap in your BC MSP coverage or if you do not request continuous coverage for BC MSP during your implied status period, it is highly recommended that you obtain temporary private insurance such as the Global Campus Health Plan.
Tips for the process
Keep in mind:
- The easiest application method is to apply online.
- Consider using a secure mailing method (such as Canada Post Xpresspost) if you apply by paper.
- You will receive a new BC Services Card (formally known as “BC CareCard”). Carry your card with you.
- Permanent residents and Canadian citizens may use their BC Services card as photo ID and their driver’s license. However, temporary BC residents (such as international students and workers) will typically be issued non-photo BC Services Cards. You can still apply for a separate BC driver’s license and/or BC photo ID if you wish by a separate application process.
Once your coverage begins
- MSP will send you an invoice in the mail every month. You need to start making payments after receiving the invoice.
- Remember to tell MSP if you change your address, change your name, leave BC permanently, or need to add/remove dependents to or from your coverage (e.g. you get married, divorced, have a common-law partner, or have children). See the Managing your MSP Account page.
- Remember to keep your MSP valid by renewing your MSP coverage each time you extend your temporary residency in Canada (for example, when you extend your study permit or get a post-graduation work permit). Be sure to read the “how having implied status affects your coverage” if this applies to you.
MSP coverage while traveling
If you’re leaving BC temporarily due to co-op placement or travel plans, you will continue being billed for your MSP payments.
You have 2 options:
1. Put a hold on (“suspend”) your MSP account if you will be away for more than 6 months and do not want to maintain your MSP coverage.
- As a resident of BC, please read MSP’s website for details on suspending your coverage.
- If you are eligible, call MSP and ask to talk to an Enrolment Specialist to temporarily suspend your account without paying while you travel. Tell MSP your departure and return date. During the temporary hold you will not be covered and you will not be charged.
- After returning to BC, you must call to reactivate your MSP account.
2. You can use the travel insurance included in your AMS/GSS Health and Dental Plan while paying for MSP when you are travel. Make sure you understand MSP’s residency requirements.
- Although MSP provides only limited coverage when you travel internationally, your AMS/GSS Health and Dental Plan does provide coverage. To use the travel insurance in your AMS/GSS Health and Dental Plan, you must also have basic insurance such as MSP or an equivalent.
- The AMS/GSS Health and Dental Plan does not cover travel to your home country.
- If you paid the MED/DENT fee (view your SSC financial summary) last September or January, you have the AMS/GSS Health and Dental Plan. This plan is valid until August 31.
- For more information, talk to the staff in the AMS/GSS Health and Dental Plan office or visit their website.