Medical Insurance

All SFU international students must have medical insurance for the duration of their studies in Canada. You must provide proof that you are covered under either: 

What is MSP?

The Medical Services Plan of BC (MSP) is mandatory medical coverage for all British Columbia residents. If you will be living in B.C. for more than 6 months, you are legally required to register for MSP upon arrival. Once you register, there is a waiting period of two to three months. To ensure you are covered during this time, you must purchase a private medical insurance plan through

BC MSP provides primary medical coverage such as:

  • Services provided by a doctor
  • X-rays and lab tests (as required by a doctor) 
  • Emergency dental and oral surgery in hospital

How does BC MSP work?

Once you enroll in MSP, you will be mailed a BC Services Card along with an invoice. You can pay monthly or in advance directly to BC MSP. (SFU cannot accept these payments.)

When you visit a health clinic or hospital, you will be asked to show your BC Services Card as proof of enrollment. This allows you to receive basic medical services free of charge. The clinic or hospital will bill BC MSP directly. 

What is insurance? provides short-term, primary medical insurance coverage. The goal of is to help transition you to Canada without having to worry about enrolling for B.C. medical insurance immediately.

When you use medical services (such as visiting a doctor or hospital) with private insurance, you may need to pay upfront and then send your receipts to the insurance company for reimbursement. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply for MSP?

To apply for BC MSP, complete the MSP Application online. Or, you can download the application form and mail it directly to BC MSP.

Please note there is a waiting period of two to three months for newcomers. In order to be covered during the waiting period, you must purchase a private medical insurance plan through You will not be charged by MSP for the waiting period.

How much does BC MSP cost and how do I pay?

Effective January 1, 2020: $75/month for all study permit holders.

MSP will send regular invoices to the address on your application form. The current cost is $75/month. You can pay monthly or in advance directly to BC MSP. You can pay by credit card online, at your bank, or using other payment options noted on the back of your MSP invoice. You will be charged starting the month you receive your BC Services Card.

Does my BC Services Card cover prescriptions, vision care and dental care?

No. The BC Services Card is a basic medical insurance plan (which covers doctor and hospital visits). Prescription medication, vision care and dental care can be covered through an extended health plan.

If I go back to my home country for a short term, can I put my MSP account on hold?

If you are going to be out of town for more than 2 months, you must contact MSP by telephone at 604-683-7151 to make arrangements to hold the account.