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Nova Scotia Health Insurance

Nova Scotia Health Insurance Overview


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Nova Scotia is the seventh most populated and fourth least populated province in Canada. It is one of the four provinces that make up Atlantic Canada and one of the three Canadian Maritimes. In land area, Nova Scotia is the second smallest of the ten Canadian provinces. The province has 3.2 in-hospital sepsis in 2016-2017 as compared to 3.9 for the rest of Canada.

To learn more about MSI coverage in Nova Scotia, click here.

What does the MSI Nova Scotia Plan not cover?

The Nova Scotia Medical Service Insurance (MSI) and hospital program cover a range of services from laboratory and diagnostic services to medically necessary nursing.

However, it does not cover the following services:

  • Services of paramedics such as naturopaths, chiropractors, massage therapists, osteopaths, physiotherapists, and podiatrists.
  • Cosmetic surgery.
  • Durable medical equipment such as wheelchairs and crutches.
  • The cost difference between standard hospital rooms and semi-private/private hospital rooms.

Optometric services not covered by the provincial health plan

The provincial plan covers medically necessary optometric services, albeit, restrictions apply to the coverage. The following optometric services are not covered by the plan.

  • Visioncare such as contact lenses, eye examinations and glasses for residents between 10 and 65 years.
  • One eye examination every two years is covered only if the resident is under the age of 10 or over the age of 64.

To get vision care quote, click here.

Prescription drugs not covered by the provincial health plan

Nova Scotia prescription drug program is designed for eligible residents who cannot afford their prescription.

The following features are not covered under the prescription drug program.

  • Prescription medications are not covered for those under the age of 65.
  • Residents are required to have a valid health card to be covered by the prescription drug program.
  • Senior pharmacare is available to Nova Scotians who are 65 and older and have no other private or public drug coverage.

To get a prescription drug health quote, click here.

Dental coverage not covered by the provincial health plan

Only medically necessary dental services carried out in a hospital are covered by the Nova Scotia plan. The following services are not covered.

  • Routine dental services such as scalings, fillings, and cleanings unless the person is under the age of 14.
  • Oral and maxillary facial surgeries are covered if medically necessary and carried out in a hospital.

To get a dental health quote, click here.

Nova Scotia Health Insurance FAQ


I lost my Health card. How do I get a new one?

You can get a new card by contacting MSI Registration and Enquiry Department on phone (at 902-496-7008 or 1-800-563-8880). Calls on these lines are toll free in Nova Scotia. You can also contact the department by emailing your change to [email protected]. However, a charge of $10 applies.

How do I cancel my health card?

You can cancel your health card by contacting MSI Registration and Enquiry Department on phone (at 902-496-7008 or 1-800-563-8880). Calls on these lines are toll free in Nova Scotia. You can also contact the department by emailing your change to [email protected].

Do I need to renew my card?

Yes, you need to renew your Nova Scotia health card every four years. However, you will be notified about the renewal three months before the expiry date. No charge applies for renewal.

Should I bring my health card if I seek medical attention?

Yes. You are required to carry your Nova Scotia health card at all times. You may be required to present it to the physician anytime you require physician services or insured hospital services.

Nova Scotia Health Video
Nova Scotia Health Authority

Nova Scotia Health Related Pages


Nova Scotia Health Updates


Nova Scotia Health News

One of the basic issues facing Nova Scotia health care is extensive wait times for mental health treatment. The extensive wait time is highly connected to the increasing number of suicides in the province. Between 2000 and 2016, the number of suicides reported in Nova Scotia has increased from 75 to 134.

The last recorded wait time for mental health patients in Halifax is 112 days and the record shows 363 days for Sydney, Cape Braton. The provincial government aims to minimize the lengthy weight time to the standard of seven days for urgent needs and 28 days for non-urgent needs.

To learn more about health issues in Nova Scotia, click here.

Nova Scotia Health Statistics

On the average, 22% of Nova Scotians are reported to smoke daily or occasionally compared to 20% for Canada in general. The figure is high in some regions of Nova Scotia (up to 29%) and low in some other region (about 19%). Also, there is a significant difference in age among the smokers with about 27% of 20-34 years Nova Scotians reported to smoke daily and occasionally whereas only 11% of 65+ residents were reported.

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