Canadians pride themselves on their nation's public health system. And it's overwhelmingly supported by the population.
However, health care systems can get confusing, and this holds true for insurance companies and their plans. You could be spending hours searching for the plan that will suit you and your family's needs.
You're in luck, though. Keep reading for a guide on Green Shield Canada, Link Plans 1-4. We will compare each plan for you, so you don't have to.
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What is Green Shield Canada?
Green Shield Canada provides comprehensive coverage for people losing Group Coverage that need their pre-existing conditions fully covered. This includes coverage for medical supplies, hearing aids, eye exams, optional dental benefits at 80% co-pay...the list is long!
There are four different plans for your different needs. You can choose the level of coverage that suits your lifestyle and budget without worrying about paying for services you won't actually use.
Your acceptance is guaranteed for all LINK plans upon receipt of your first payment, if you apply within 90 days of the end date for your Group health coverage.
All of this comes without a medical questionnaire or exam when you apply, and there is no waiting period. Many supplemental health plans will make you wait for three to six months before you can even start using your benefits.
The best thing? Your coverage is guaranteed, no matter where you work. Even freelancers are covered!
Link Plan One
This is your essential, basic coverage for Rx drugs, vision, and extended care for specialists. This plan also includes hospital accommodation.
It covers generic medications that are approved for Canada and have the appropriate, authorized requirements. Your brand name drugs might be covered if no generic version is available. Drugs that treat obesity, ED, infertility and smoking cessation aren't covered.
Drug coverage is capped at $500 paid at 80% per year. Vision care including Rx eyeglasses, contacts, and laser eye surgery is $150 per person, every 2 years. Eye exams are capped at $50 per person, every two years.
Extended health services are maxed at $20 per visit, with 15 visits per person, for each practitioner. Massage and acupuncture is covered at $20 per visit, with 15 visits per year.
Social work and psychologists are covered to $600 per person, per year. Speech therapists are covered at $300 per year, and accidental dental is maxed at $2,500 per person each year. Ambulance transport, both air and land, are covered.
Diagnostic tests and dialysis equipment are at a $2,000 maximum. Medical supplies are covered to $1,500 maximum. Travel emergency medical service is maxed at 10 days per trip and $5,000,000 per person.
Hospital accommodation is covered to $200 per person each day, with 30 days per year.
Link Plan Two
This plan has the same benefits of Link Plan One, but with a dental plan that increases your maximums each year, for the first three years.
The same drug coverage details apply to this plan. However, your max coverage is $750 per person, each year, paid at 80%. Your dental coverage includes cleanings and routine exams as well as x-rays, fillings, extractions. Fluoride treatments for children are covered at 80%.
Specialized treatments are also paid at 80% and include root canals, scaling and root planing, occlusal adjustments and denture repairs. Orthodontics are paid at 80%.
Vision care is covered to $200, and eye exams are covered to $50 per person every 2 years.
Specialist care is maxed at $300 per person for each practitioner. Massage and acupuncture visits are capped at $20 per visit for 15 visits each year.
Psychologists and social workers are combined in coverage up to $600 per year. Speech therapy is $300 per year and accidental dental is maxed at $5,000 per year. Ambulance transport is covered, land and air, and hearing aids are covered to $400 per person every 4 years.
Diagnostic tests and imaging are at a $2,000 max and medical supplies are covered to $2,500 max. Emergency medical travel coverage is set to 10 days per trip, at $5,000,000. Hospital accommodation is covered to $200 per day, for 30 days a year.
Link Plan Three
LINK 3 plan includes even more coverage increases dental coverage for the first three years, and includes crowns and bridge work. Prescription drug coverage goes up to $1,200 per year, paid at 80%.
Dental care maximums are at $750 for the first year, $1,000 for the second year, and $1,250 in the third year.
More extensive treatments are covered at 80%, such as root canals and denture repairs. Coverage towards crowns and bridgework is paid at 50% in the third year, with orthodontic services not covered.
Vision care such as glasses and laser eye surgery is maxed at $250 every 2 years. Eye exams are covered to $65 every 2 years.
Psychologists and social workers are covered to $600 per year. Speech therapy is maxed at $400 per year, and accidental dental is covered to $10,000 per person.
Ambulance Transport is fully covered. Hearing aids are covered to $500 every 4 years, and diagnostic tests and imaging are covered to $2,000. Separate maximums for medical supplies are covered to $5,000 per year.
Your emergency travel coverage is extended to 15 days per trip, with a max coverage of $5,000,000. Your preferred hospital accommodation is covered for $200 a day, for 30 days a year.
Link Plan Four
This is the most popular and the most comprehensive plan with the most drug coverage. Your first year of drug coverage is $2,300, the second year it's at $2,400. Your third year and beyond are at $2,500. All paid at 80%.
Dental care maximums start at $1,000 for your first year, $1,250 for the second year, and $1,750 in your third year. Your dental services are covered for the same treatments as all the other plans, but with some perks.
Crown and bridge work is available by year 3 at 60% paid, and orthodontics like teeth straightening are also covered at 60% by year 3. Your vision care needs are met at $300 per every 2 years, and your eye exams are covered at $80 every 2 years.
Specialist care is covered to $600 per person, for each practitioner. Massage and acupuncture are covered to $30 per visit, with 20 visits per year. Psychologists and social workers are covered at $600. Speech therapy is also covered at $600 and accidental dental coverage is maxed at $10,000 per year.
Diagnostics are covered to $2,000 per year, and medical supplies are covered to $5,000 per year. A 15-day emergency medical travel coverage is set at $5,000,000 and your preferred hospital stays are covered to $250 per day, 30 days a year.
Ready to Shop for Your Plan?
Researching health plans in Canada might seem like a daunting task, but hopefully, this guide helped you understand your options.
You may have found a Green Shield Canada LINK plan you like while reading this guide. But if you still have questions, or need to talk to a broker, feel free to take a look at our site. We've got you covered.