The Canadian healthcare system is funded through taxes and is administered by the provinces and territories. All Canadians and permanent residents are entitled to apply for public health insurance.
When you need to use any health services, you will have to show your health insurance card. It is extremely wise to carry your health card at all times as health service providers check the health care coverage of people they treat.
It is important to remember when emigrating to Canada that you will need to apply to the particular province or territorial government that you are moving to and should be done as soon as possible after you have moved to Canada. You will need to show id proving your resident status.
Public health care coverage can sometimes take up to three months to become effective after your application. It is highly advisable, therefore, to take a comprehensive private health care plan to cover you and your family for this interim period.
Most health care provided at a provincial level is reciprocated across Canada but, it is important to note, coverage in one province or territory may not extend fully when travelling to another.
It is vital to carefully assess what you are actually covered for when deciding on the best combination of public and private health insurance.