International student health coverage
Through the Manitoba International Student Health Plan, you have access to the health coverage you need so you can focus on your studies.
Who is covered by the Manitoba International Student Health Plan (MISHP)?
International students who are registered in courses in a qualifying program at the University of Manitoba will be enrolled at the request of the University. Students must be registered in courses in a qualifying program in each term that corresponds with a coverage period. Qualifying programs include degree-seeking students, English Language Centre program students, and those in Extended Education certificate programs.
International students who are required to have a valid study permit by Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada must have one or be issued one.
It is mandatory for international students in Manitoba to have primary health coverage. However, if you have comparable coverage—for example, if you have Manitoba Health coverage through a spouse or if you are already covered by MISHP because you took a course at another institution—you can request an opt out. Opt outs are managed by the administrator. To learn more, contact Studentcare.
Family coverage for a spouse and/or dependants can be purchased within 30 days following the start of an academic term. The cost of this coverage is in addition to your own MISHP fee. We strongly encourage all family members who are with you to obtain health coverage. For further details and to purchase this coverage, visit mishp.ca.
If you are going on maternity/paternity leave, you can extend your coverage for up to 12 months during your leave from studies. For details on maternity/paternity leave coverage, contact the Studentcare coordinator.
International students who graduate from a degree program can have their coverage extended for four months after their final term. To apply for this extension, contact Studentcare.
How does the health plan work?
Your full health coverage consists of two health plans that work together to give you access to the health coverage you need so you can focus on your studies.
Through the Manitoba International Student Health Plan (MISHP), you have access to primary health coverage such as seeing a physician at a clinic or hospital. Your secondary, extended coverage is offered through the UMSU Health & Dental Plan and covers services not provided by the primary health coverage (such as vision care, dental care, prescription drugs and physiotherapy). Although MISHP and the UMSU Health & Dental Plan are different, Manitoba Blue Cross is the benefits carrier and Studentcare is the administrator for both plans. For details on what’s covered by MISHP, visit www.mishp.ca. For details on the UMSU Plan, visit https://studentcare.ca.
Emergency-only early coverage
If you’re a student newly enrolled in MISHP who requires unexpected medical care, you have access to emergency-only coverage for one month before your first term. This coverage also extends to any dependents enrolled in MISHP for that same first term. During this time, please pay up front for any medical expenses you incur, keep your receipts, and once you’ve received your MISHP Coverage Card, submit a claim form to Manitoba Blue Cross to be reimbursed for eligible expenses.
If you plan to arrive in Canada earlier than one month before your first term, we recommend that you purchase private travel health insurance (separate from MISHP) to cover you during that time.
How do I get my coverage card?
You need to be registered as a student in order to receive your card. Provided you are registered at UM, your card will be emailed to your student email address after the beginning of the first term in which you are enrolled in the health plan.
For example, students beginning their studies in the Fall Term, as well as returning students who were not previously covered by MISHP, will receive their card in September. Students beginning their studies in the Winter Term will receive their card in January.
If you are a returning student who already has a MISHP card, you will receive a new card by email at the beginning of the academic year as well. You can continue to use your previous card or replace it with the new version.
You can also download your card from mishp.ca/coverage. Be sure to print and take your card with you, along with photo ID, when you go to a medical appointment, clinic, or hospital.
Do I have to pay up front at the doctor’s office, clinic or hospital?
If you download and take your MISHP coverage card and photo ID with you, you may not need to pay up front. If you do not bring your MISHP coverage card, you will be asked to pay up front. If you are charged for services, keep your receipts and submit a claim form to Manitoba Blue Cross to be reimbursed for eligible expenses. Claim forms are available at mishp.ca.
Where to go when you need to access care
Knowing where to go will help you receive better healthcare, sooner. There are three types of care you can access:
- Clinic or Doctor's office for regular healthcare needs
- Urgent Care Centres for urgent but not life-threatening conditions
- Emergency Departments in hospitals for life-threatening conditions
Review this PDF from the Manitoba Blue Cross for details.
Visit the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority for current wait times at walk-in clinics, Urgent Care or Emergency Departments in Winnipeg.
If you have any questions or need more help, you can call Health Links (Info Santé) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 204-788-8200 or toll-free 1-888-315-9257. For example, if you're not sure which type of facility to visit, you can call, and Registered nurses will provide assessment, triage and health-care advice to individuals of all ages calling from within Manitoba. Interpreter services are available in over 200 languages.
How to See a Doctor
If you are living in Manitoba and do not have a family or primary care doctor, visit the Government of Manitoba Family Doctor Finder page to find one in your area. If you search “doctor near me” online, you will find a list of walk-in and private clinics that are nearest to your present location.
To access health services, please make sure you always carry a printed copy of your Manitoba International Student Health Plan (MISHP) card with you. A good tip is to keep it together with your photo ID in case of emergencies! Some providers may accept a screenshot of your digital card on your phone. Your coverage card is usually emailed within six weeks after the start of the term. You will need to present it every time you visit a doctor or access healthcare services in Manitoba.
How to Contact a Doctor
On-campus: University Health Service
- Call or show up at their office to get a same-day appointment (limited spaces)
- Schedule an appointment in advance (a week or two later)
- Any walk-in clinic will accept patients, but you may have to wait a long time, depending on how busy the clinic is.
- If you want to see the same doctor each time, it's recommended to use the Family Doctor Finder to request a family physician to take you on as a patient. When booking with your doctor, you may need to book your appointment several weeks in advance.
What does the health plan cover?
What does MISHP cover?
Under this plan, you have the same primary health coverage as a Manitoba resident (with Manitoba Health). This means that there are no exclusions for pre-existing medical conditions. This coverage will allow you to visit a doctor, clinic, or hospital for necessary medical tests like x-rays or blood tests. It will also cover you for emergency or routine medical procedures. The seasonal flu vaccine is also covered under MISHP.
There is a lifetime total claim cap of $1 million. In addition, there is a $25,000 drug cap for the first six months a student is enrolled in the plan (or for the first year for any dependents who are enrolled); after the first six months (or the first year for dependents), drug claims are only limited by the lifetime total cap of $1 million. Please note that the initial $25,000 drug cap counts toward the $1 million lifetime maximum.
Empower Me is a confidential mental health and wellness service available 24/7, 365 days a year is covered under the Enhanced Care UMSU Health & Dental Plan.
What coverage does MISHP provide for expenses related to COVID-19 in Manitoba?
- During an eligible academic term, if you are required to be tested for COVID-19 in approved testing sites, the medical expenses incurred for testing will be covered by MISHP.
- Please note that newly enrolled international students are covered on an emergency basis for up to one (1) calendar month prior to the start of their first academic term. During this period, medical treatment and testing for COVID-19 will only be covered if symptoms began after departure from your home country.
- International students are able to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in Manitoba at no cost. You will need to present some form of government-issued ID such as a passport to get the vaccine. Read more about the vaccine and current eligibility here.
How much does the health plan cost?
The cost of the plan is assessed by term, at point of registration. You will pay it with your tuition fees.
For undergraduate, graduate and English Language Centre program students:
- In Fall 2023, students will pay $344 for coverage from Sept. 1 – Dec. 31, 2023.
- In Winter 2024, students will pay $688 for coverage from Jan. 1 – Aug. 31, 2024.
- In Spring/Summer 2024, newly admitted students (those not enrolled in the Winter Term) will pay $344 for coverage from May 1 – Aug. 31, 2024.
For Extended Education students in one-year programs:
- Students will pay $1,032 for one full year of coverage, at the beginning of the first term in which they register.