MSI (Medical Services Insurance) Program: The Benefits and Coverage Overview
The Medical Services Insurance program (MSI) covers the Nova Scotia residents for medical expenses. Furthermore, residents can also take advantage of the Hospital Insurance Program for hospital related expenses.
Eligible residents are covered for medically required medical, hospital, dental and optometry services in the MSI programs, although some restrictions apply.
MSI and Hospital Program Coverage
The program covers the following:
- Nursing services deemed medically necessary.
- Dental, hospital, doctor, and optometry services considered as medically necessary.
- Meals and accommodations in a hospital at standard level. This is covered by the Hospital Insurance Program.
- X-rays, MRIs, CAT scans, laboratory, and some other diagnostic services, if they are considered as medical necessities.
- All costs incurred in a hospital are covered by the MSI.
- Physiotherapy if carried out in a hospital.
- Removal of impacted teeth via surgical procedures.
- Regular dental services for children under 14.
- Maxillary facial and oral surgeries when carried out in a hospital and considered as medical necessities.
- Examination of one eye ever two years for residents below 10 years and over 64 years. This does not include coverage for eye glasses.
- Coverage for prosthetic such as artificial limbs through MSI. This can also be covered by the Workers Compensation Board and First Nations as well as Inuit and Aboriginal Health plans.
Costs /Expenses Not Covered By the Plan
The following costs are not covered by MSI and hospital programs.
- Ambulances services, unless when used for transportation between hospitals or other medical facilities.
- Regular dental services such as scaling, fillings, and Albeit, people under the age of 14 are covered for these services.
- Residents under 64 are not covered for prescription medications, but you can qualify for some prescription drugs as discussed below.
- Paramedical services like naturopaths, chiropractors, podiatrists, massage therapists, osteopaths, and physiotherapy.
- Nova Scotians traveling outside of their provinces are hardly covered.
- Vision care is not covered for residents between age 10 and 64 (both inclusive). These may include contact lenses, glasses, and eye exams.
- Hearing aids, albeit the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch (FNIHB) are exempted.
- Durable medical devices such as wheelchairs and clutches.
- Cosmetic surgery and cost difference between standard hospital rooms and semi-private/private hospital rooms.
Prescription Drug and Other Programs
Eligible residents who cannot afford their prescription and/or supplies can leverage the Nova Scotia Pharmacare program.
Here is a breakdown of the program.
- Family Pharmacare: If you reside in Nova Scotia permanently and also have a valid health card, you are eligible for this program. The co-payment and deductible for this program are calculated based on the family size and income. The greater the need of the family, the less the amount they will pay. This program is created for families without drug coverage or families that have high prescription drug costs.
- Senior’s Pharmacare: Nova Scotia Seniors above 65 can leverage this plan if they are permanent residents. However, the senior is required not to have any other private or public drug coverage and also have a valid health card to be considered eligible. This program is created for seniors who have no coverage or with high drug costs. When you enroll in this program, your Health Care will serve as your Pharamcare card.
- Drug Assistance for Cancer Patients: To be eligible for receiving aids for your medications related to cancer treatment, you are expected to have a valid health card as well as a gross family income below $15,720.
- Community Services Pharmacare Program: This program offers Pharmacare coverage to disability support and income assistance clients, children under the care of child welfare and “low income Pharmacare for Children” clients.
- Palliative Care Drug Program: If you reside in Nova Scotia, have a valid health card and want to live the rest of your life at home, with your friends and family and have 6 months or less to live, you can take advantage of this program.
- Nova Scotia Diabetes Assistance Program: This program is no longer available to Nova Scotians but residents can still leverage the insulin pump program for similar benefit. Furthermore, residents can also opt for the private health insurance plan known as the Combo Starter. This plan offers 100% coverage to Nova Scotians for pens, test strips, lances, needles etc.
- Insulin Pump Program: This program provides financial assistance to residents for pump-related supplies and insulin pumps. It provides coverage for diabetics below the age of 26. The eligibility for this plan is determined by the family size and income.
To know the full details visit the official Nova Scotia’s MSI Program website
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