Private health and dental insurance

You can get private health and dental insurance from a workplace benefits plan or by buying it from an insurer.

Workplace benefit plans

Workplace benefitBenefit Money, goods, or services that you get from your workplace or from a government program such as the Canada Pension Plan.+ read full definition plans are the most affordable way of covering expenses that aren’t covered by your provincial health plan. Your employer covers some of the cost and risks are pooled across many employees, so the cost of insurance is lower.

Workplace plans typically cover:

  • prescription drugs
  • dental care
  • physiotherapy and paramedical services (such as chiropractors, massage therapy, podiatrists)
  • employee and spouse’s life insuranceLife Insurance Insurance that pays cash to your family or other beneficiary after your death. This can give them income and help pay your funeral and other final costs.+ read full definition (including accidental death and dismemberment insurance)
  • disability insuranceDisability insurance Insurance that gives you income in case you get sick or hurt and can’t work.+ read full definition.
Ask about optional coverage

If you or your spouse has a workplace plan, find out if it offers optional coverage – such as increased amounts of life insurance or higher levels of disability insurance. This can provide additional coverage you may need at a low cost.

Individual coverage

If you don’t have coverage under a workplace plan, you can get health and dental coverage privately. However, this coverage is typically designed to pay the costs associated with a major accident or illness – not day-to-day health care expenses. It’s often called catastrophic coverage. It may be worth considering because the health costs associated with a major accident or illness can be significant.

Take action

  1. Review any coverage at work.
  2. Assess the merits of optional coverage.
  3. Ensure you have health coverage for catastrophic events
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