Ontario's health care system is one of the best in the world. If you live in Ontario and qualify, you have access to provincially-funded health care services in your community for your visits to a doctor and other basic and emergency health care services. See the Health Care section for more information.
The Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) was created as a mechanism to fund these health services. You first have to enrol into the Ontario Health Insurance Plan. Once you have been accepted into the plan, doctors and other health providers will bill OHIP for the services that they have provided you. See the Health Care section for more information.
Note: If you are new to Ontario, there is a three-month waiting period before OHIP covers your medical costs. It is still a good idea to apply for an OHIP card as soon as you arrive. You could also consider buying private health insurance to cover the waiting period.
Tip: Several groups are exempt from the waiting period. Get more information from your local ServiceOntario - Health Insurance office. Use the Service Location Finder to find an office near you. You can also talk to a ServiceOntario representative by calling the Info line at 1-866-532-3161 Monday to Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.
- What You Need to Know About Your Ontario Health Card PDF brochure
- What is the Interim Federal Health (IFH) program?, Settlement.org
- Changes to OHIP Eligibility
You have to register to the Ontario Health Insurance Plan by visiting one of the OHIP offices to get an Ontario Health Card. You will have to fill out a registration form (PDF) and provide the original copies of other required documents (PDF).
If the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care doesn’t have an office in your area, you can call ServiceOntario at 1-888-376-5197 for information about the mobile Health Card Outreach service.
Important: Always carry your Health Card with you. Health service providers need to validate it every time you receive treatments.
- How do I apply for a Health (OHIP) Card?, Settlement.org
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