Find out what kind of health insurance you need during your studies at Camosun.
Basic Health Insurance
International students: You are required to have medical insurance for the entire duration of your studies in Canada.
Healthcare costs in Canada can be quite high and it is crucial that you are covered under a comprehensive insurance plan during your time here.
During the first three months, International students in Camosun College are enrolled in guard.me insurance that covers medical services to address new and unexpected illness or injury.
Students must apply for the BC Medical Services Plan (MSP) when they arrive in Canada if they are planning to stay in British Columbia for more than six months. Please apply for MSP as soon as you arrive in B.C. You cannot apply for MSP before you arrive.
After living in British Columbia (BC) for three months (the balance of the month in which you arrive in BC, plus two full calendar months) MSP will begin.
Please make sure you apply for MSP in advance to ensure you are covered when your guard.me coverage ends!
guard.me is an International Insurance provider. guard.me coverage is mandatory for all international students and is included in your fees from the date of your arrival to Canada until your MSP starts.
The health insurance policy provides coverage for emergency medical services that is valid all over the world, except your country of origin. You can find a summary of the benefits and
policies in many different languages for your convenience.
Please ensure to apply for MSP as soon as you arrive in B.C. and before your guard.me expires!
guard.me also provides a 24-hour health information line and a Mobile Doctor app so you can always have their support.
Your coverage will start on the first day of your arrival month in Canada. You must inform us as soon as you have your arrival month confirmed.
Consult the guard.me Policyholder Guide for more information on how to use and update your guard.me account, including how to submit claims and download your card.
BC Medical Services Plan (MSP)
To apply for MSP, please visit BC MSP Website. You will need supporting documents such as your study permit when you apply.
The cost of MSP is $75 per month per person. 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.
Once your application is approved, you will receive your BC Services Card which may be used as a form of identification.
MSP covers the cost of basic medical care within Canada, including most physician and hospital services. In most cases, you will not have to pay at the time you seek medical care when you show your BC Services Card.
MSP does not cover dental care, prescription drugs, routine vision care or travel. For a full list of your medical and health care benefits, visit the MSP website.
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).
Extended Health Insurance
All Camosun students are offered extended health and dental benefits through the Camosun College Student Society (CCSS).
This benefit is part of your ancillary fees and cover some health and dental services that are not covered by the provincial Medical Services Plan (MSP), such as ambulance fee, vision care, dental care and prescription drug. This is an annual fee in your student fees.
For detailed information about this benefit and on how to obtain your benefit card, please visit CCSS Student Health and Dental plan website.
Seeing a Doctor in Victoria
For emergencies, dial 911 and go to the emergency room.
You can also use apps like the Telus Health MyCare app to book telehealth appointments quicker.
Call 8-1-1 toll-free in BC, or for the deaf and hard of hearing, call 7-1-1 (TTY). You can also visit the HealthLink BC website.
You can speak with a health service navigator, who can also connect you with a:
- registered nurse any time, every day of the year
- registered dietitian from 9am to 5pm PT, Monday to Friday
- qualified exercise professional from 9am to 5pm PT, Monday to Friday
- pharmacist from 5pm to 9am PT, every day of the year
Translation services are available in more than 130 languages.
Information for post-secondary students by Island Health, a Regional Health Authority
Do you need one or more doses of vaccine?
You can register online at getvaccinated.gov.bc.ca or call 1-833-838-2323. Once registered, you will receive a confirmation number. Please follow the instructions to make an appointment.
Visit COVID-19 Immunization Clinics to find a clinic near you. Drop-in without an appointment or personal health number to get your first dose of vaccine. Second dose walk-in spots may be available, based on vaccine supply. To ensure your spot please follow the instructions above to make an appointment.
Vaccinated outside of BC?
Anyone who received COVID-19 vaccines in another province or country should submit their vaccination record. This is particularly important for international students as additional vaccination may be recommended. Do this as soon as possible.
Follow these steps:
- Register online: getvaccinated.gov.bc.ca or by phone at 1-833-838-2323.
- Submit your official vaccination record at immunizationrecord.gov.bc.ca.
- Be notified about COVID-19 vaccination needs.
Trusted sources of information
Find all COVID-19 updates from Camosun College