UHIP’s policy year is September 1 to August 31. We provide up to $1,000,000 CAD for primary health care services, similar to OHIP for eligible medically necessary services.

    What is covered?

    • Hospital

      IMPORTANT: You must notify Cowan within 48 hours of your admission to hospital. Some services and treatments need to be approved by Cowan before they happen.

      UHIP covers:

      • Emergency hospitalization in a standard ward room (100% coverage for the first four days, and limited to 2.5 times the interprovincial rate for residents of Canada).
        • Semi-private or private room must be medically necessary and pre-approved by Cowan.
      • Operating and delivery room usage.
      • Radiotherapy facilities and respiratory equipment.
      • Supplies and medications provided by the hospital during your stay.
      • Physician services or services of any other provider paid by the hospital.

      You need Cowan’s pre-approval for:

      • Surgery or treatment that is not for a medical emergency (such as dialysis and cancer treatment).
      • Semi-private or private room accommodation.
    • Doctors/Clinics (family doctor, general practitioner or specialist)

      UHIP covers:

      • The services of a physician (covered up to 125% of what the physician charges for Ontario residents to the same overall maximum and terms as under OHIP), including:
        • Diagnosis and treatment of illness or injury.
        • Surgery, including the administration of anaesthetics.
        • Care related to pregnancy (prenatal and postnatal)
        • One annual health exam
      • Services of a nurse practitioner are also eligible (covered up to 80% of what UHIP will pay for physicians).

      A complete list of OHIP services and fees for Ontario residents can be found in the OHIP Schedule of Benefits.

    • Eye examinations

      UHIP covers:

      • For those who are age 19 and under or 65 and over, one annual eye examination by either an:
        • Ophthalmologist (covered up to 125% of what the provider charges for Ontario residents to the same overall maximum and terms as under OHIP).
        • Optometrist (covered at 100% of what the provider charges for Ontario residents to the same overall maximum and terms as under OHIP).
      • If you are age 20 to 64 and have any of the following conditions, you may be eligible for eye exams every 12 months, when pre-approved by Cowan.
        • Diabetes
        • Glaucoma
        • Cataracts
        • Retinal disease
        • Amblyopia
        • Visual field defects
        • Corneal disease and strabismus

      A complete list of OHIP services and fees for Ontario residents can be found in the OHIP Schedule of Benefits.

    • Services of other practitioners

      UHIP covers:

      • The services of a registered podiatrist (covered at 100% of what the provider charges for Ontario residents to the same overall maximum and terms as under OHIP). Surgery is not covered.
      • The services of a registered physiotherapist (covered at 100% of what the provider charges for Ontario residents to the same overall maximum and terms as under OHIP), when pre-approved by Cowan.
      Injury requiring physiotherapy Age 20 to 64 All other ages
      Non-complex injury or surgery that did not require inpatient stay (such as ACL repair, arthroscopy, rotator cuff surgery). Not eligible. Eligible for private physiotherapy (overall maximum $312).
      Complex injury or surgery or neurological injury (such as knee or hip replacement or stroke) that requires an overnight stay in the hospital. Eligible in hospital and private clinics (overall maximum $312). Eligible in hospital and private clinics (overall maximum $312).
    • Diagnostic and lab services

      UHIP covers these services when ordered by a physician or a nurse practitioner for diagnostic and treatment purposes:

      • Lab services such as X-rays, ultrasounds and blood work (covered at 100% of what the provider charges for Ontario residents to the same overall maximum and terms as under OHIP). Services in an approved laboratory listed within the Preferred Provider Network are eligible.
      • Diagnostic services such as MRI and CAT scans (covered at 100% of what the provider charges for Ontario residents to the same overall maximum and terms as under OHIP). Services at a hospital or at a provider within the Preferred Provider Network are eligible.

      A complete list of OHIP services and fees for Ontario residents can be found in the OHIP Schedule of Benefits.

    • Ambulance in Ontario

      UHIP covers:

      • Ground or air ambulance within Ontario to the nearest available hospital in the province, when a physician or designated hospital official confirms as essential (covered at 100% of what the provider charges for Ontario residents to the same overall maximum and terms as under OHIP, less the same $45 fee applicable to all residents).

      A complete list of OHIP services and fees for Ontario residents can be found in the OHIP Schedule of Benefits.

    • Oral and maxillofacial surgery

      UHIP covers:

      • Oral and maxillofacial surgery such as corrective or reconstructive jaw surgery that can only be performed in hospital (covered at 100% of what the provider charges for Ontario residents to the same overall maximum and terms as under OHIP), when pre-approved by Cowan.
    • Home Care

      UHIP covers:

      • The services of a medical professional to provide home care (covered at 100% of what the provider charges for Ontario residents to the same overall maximum and terms as the Ontario government), when pre-approved by Cowan.
    • Assistive Medical Devices

      UHIP covers:

      • Specialized medical devices and aids such as home oxygen, and respiratory equipment and supplies (covered to the same overall maximum and terms as the Ontario Assistive Devices Program), when pre-approved by Cowan.

      A complete list of devices can be found at Ontario’s Assistive Devices Program.

    • Emergencies outside Ontario, and within Canada

      UHIP covers:

      • Outside of Ontario, UHIP limits coverage to medical emergencies (not applicable to those who live and receive services in Gatineau/Hull). This means that your condition requires immediate medical attention to relieve acute pain and suffering (covered at 100% of what a provider charges in Ontario to the same overall maximum and terms as under OHIP, and excludes ambulance).

      You must notify Cowan within 48 hours of your admission to hospital. Some services and treatments need to be approved by Cowan before they happen.

    • Emergencies outside of Canada

      UHIP covers:

      • Outside of Canada, UHIP limits coverage to medical emergencies. This means that your condition requires immediate medical attention to relieve acute pain and suffering (coverage is limited to the same overall maximum and conditions as under OHIP, and excludes ambulance). Example:
        • Emergency outpatient services (maximum $50 CAD per day).
        • Emergency inpatient services (maximum $400 CAD per day for coronary care or intensive care units, maximum $200 CAD per day for lower-level care).

      UHIP reimbursement outside of Canada is severely limited. We strongly advise that you buy travel insurance to avoid significant out-of-pocket expenses. Check if your University supplemental insurance offers out of country coverage.

      You must notify Cowan within 48 hours of your admission to hospital. Some services and treatments need to be approved by Cowan before they happen.

    • Repatriation

      UHIP covers:

      • The services to transport to your home country once you are stable, when Cowan pre-approves and arranges these services:
        • During the automatic extension for hospitalization
        • If you are diagnosed as terminally ill.
      • The services to transport your remains to your home country (maximum $20,000) upon your death, when Cowan pre-approves and arranges these services, or.
        • The services to cremate or bury (maximum $10,000) in the place where death occurs.
    • What isn’t covered by UHIP?

      Including:

      • Treatment or surgery in Canada, where travel to Canada is undertaken specifically for the purpose of obtaining medical treatment or hospital services, even if the visit is taken on the advice of a physician.
      • Medical examinations and tests for immigration or for a third party.
      • Cosmetic surgery (unless required because of injury caused by an accident occurring while the Covered Person’s coverage is in force and would be covered by OHIP).
      • Out-of-hospital food or accommodation.
      • Charges that are eligible under another plan, or would have been provided without cost in the absence of insurance.
      • Court testimony, preparation of records, reports, certificates, or communications.
      • Dental care services, except noted in the coverage details.
      • Supplemental health and dental services, e.g. prescription drugs, dental cleanings, eyeglasses, acupuncture.
      • Drugs, unless administered during a hospital stay.
      • Hospital visits solely for drug administration.
      • Expenses for travel time, mileage, or telephone advice.
      • Lab services or clinical pathology, unless specifically included.
      • Travel emergency medical services during an approved leave of absence if you have exceeded the maximum trip duration.
      • Charges in excess of UHIP limits, or in the absence of limits, reasonable and customary.
      • Physician services or examinations for screenings, survey, or research processes, except those covered by OHIP.
      • Private duty nursing, except under home care benefit.
      • Services not currently covered by OHIP unless otherwise noted. Changes to OHIP will not be automatically adopted by UHIP.

    Applying for and Renewing UHIP

    • Students

      You will be enrolled in UHIP automatically by your university. Premiums will be charged to your student account. While you are an eligible student, your coverage renewal is automatic.

    • Employees/Short-Term Visitors/Dependants

      You must apply for UHIP, and pay the university. Once enrolled, you must contact the university to renew and pay your premium before your coverage end date.

    When does coverage start/stop?

    • When does my coverage start?

      Coverage starts on the date you arrive in Canada, or the 10th of the month before your studies or employment starts, whichever is later. If you arrive in Canada before you’re eligible for UHIP, you must buy private medical insurance until your UHIP start date. Example:

      Arrival in Canada August 5
      Start of your studies or employment September 1
      Buy private medical insurance August 5 – 9
      Start of UHIP coverage August 10
    • When will my UHIP coverage stop?

      Your coverage stops on:

      • The date you are no longer eligible for UHIP (e.g. you’ve withdrawn from your studies, left your employment, or retired)
      • The last day of the month for which you’ve paid premiums.
      • The date you become eligible for OHIP.
      • Twenty-four months after the date you are notified that your OHIP coverage is denied.
      • The date you refuse repatriation, during the automatic extension period for hospitalization.
      • The date Cowan obtains evidence that you misused your coverage card.
      • The date Cowan obtains evidence that you failed to report medical test results or submitted false medical test reports to the Canadian government to obtain medical clearance.
      • The date the group insurance policy is terminated.

    How can I extend my coverage?

    • Graduation/convocation

      If you are authorized to stay in Ontario, you can extend your coverage until the later of:

      • The end of the term in which you graduate (maximum four months), or
      • The end of the term in which you convocate at the first available convocation date (maximum six months).

      You must apply and pay the university for this extension before your coverage ends.

    • Travel in Canada
      • If you are authorized to stay in Canada to travel, you may extend your UHIP coverage (maximum two months, up to a combined maximum of six months including the extension for graduation/convocation).

      You must apply and pay the university for this extension before your coverage ends.

    • Extension of student visa or work permit
      • If your document has expired and you have applied to extend it, you may extend your UHIP coverage.

      You must apply and pay the university for this extension before your coverage ends.

    • Emergency hospitalization on your coverage end date
      • If you or a dependent family member are confined to hospital as an inpatient for non-elective services on the date your coverage would terminate, your coverage will be extended during your hospitalization (until Cowan arranges for repatriation or 365 days, whichever is less).

      You do not need to apply for this extension.

    • Leave of Absence

      If your university approves, you may take a leave of absence from your studies and continue your UHIP:

      • For non-medical reasons (maximum to the end of the term in which leave is authorized, and limited to one term in a twelve-month period).
      • Maternity, paternity, or parental leave (maximum 12 months).
      • For medical reasons (maximum to the end of the term in which leave is authorized).

      You must apply and pay the university for this leave of absence before your coverage ends.

      Note: Travel emergency medical coverage limited to 60 days during medical leaves of absence. Coverage will not restart until you return to Canada. For all other leaves, travel emergency medical coverage is limited to 120 days.

    Opting out & Exemptions

    • Getting an exemption from UHIP

      Everyone living in Ontario is required to have primary health insurance. For Ontario residents, that’s OHIP. For international students, employees, and visitors, that’s UHIP. There are a few government plans that cover their citizens while in Ontario. If you have one of these plans, you may be exempt and opt-out of UHIP. Other plans will not be considered by Cowan for exemption. 

      Important information to know before applying for an exemption:

      • You must meet at least 1 condition in column A to have your exemption request reviewed.
      • Any requests received that do not meet 1 condition in column A will NOT be reviewed.
      • You must submit your request within 45 days of your UHIP eligibility date.
      • You are responsible for gathering all information that Cowan requests, in English or French only.
      • Your application does not guarantee an exemption from UHIP.
      • While waiting for Cowan’s decision, you must remain enrolled in UHIP and pay the required premium.
      • All exemption decisions are valid only for that academic year.
      • If Cowan approves your exemption, your University may give you a refund.

      A – If you: B – Then you need to:
      1. Have coverage under one of these plans:

      • Ciência sem Fronteiras (Csf)
      • Embassy of Botswana – Student Program (Cowan #G0020376)
      • Embassy of the State of Kuwait GHIP Replacement
      • Interim Federal Health Care Plan
      • Libyan Embassy and Scholarship Program – Canada Policy #G0068002
      • Saudi Arabian Cultural Bureau (SACB-HDP) Policy #165069
      • Any Canadian provincial/territorial government health insurance plan (e.g. OHIP)
      Provide valid proof of this coverage to the UHIP Office at your University. You do not need to complete a request for exemption form.
      2. Diplomatic status Provide valid proof of this coverage to the UHIP Office at your University. You do not need to complete an exemption request form.
      3. Are covered under a sponsored plan supported by your government.

      (This means your government is paying for your education, living expenses and has purchased a health care policy for you).

      Note: your exemption will be declined if you hold publicly funded government insurance from your home country, or if your policy contains any of the following (this is not a complete list):

      • Excludes pre-existing, previously diagnosed chronic/congenital (known or unknown) illnesses or injuries.
      • Plan maximum under $1,000,000.00 CAD.
      • Deductibles or upfront costs.
      • Any exclusions to conditions regardless of the actual existence of any illness/conditions (for example, self-harm, pregnancy, mental health).
      • Policies that base their rates of reimbursement according to their national health care scheme.
      Complete and submit a request for an exemption.

      You must submit all of the following documentation (in English or French only) with your request:

      A completed Request for Exemption from UHIP form.

      A copy of your member identification card with eligibility dates.

      A copy of your full policy details that include exclusions and limitations.

      Your request will not be considered if any of the information is missing.

      Send your completed form and supporting documents to Cowan by email case.mgmt@cowangroup.ca or toll-free fax at 613-741-7771.

      Learn more about how to complete an Exemption form.

    Coverage for your family

    • Eligible dependants

      Do you have family members who will be moving with you to Canada? If they are eligible dependants, you must buy them UHIP coverage if they will be living with you in Ontario. Only dependants with an exemption can opt out of UHIP.

      Eligible dependants include:

      • The legal or common-law spouse who is living with the eligible student or employee, where the common-law relationship has existed for at least 12 months.
      • The natural or legally adopted child, stepchild, or child for whom the eligible student or employee has been appointed legal guardian, whose primary residence is with the student or employee, is unmarried, dependent on the student or employee for support, and under age 22 (under age 25 if studying full-time at an accredited educational institution, or any age if mentally or physically disabled.
      • Dependants of Primary Members whose coverage under this policy terminated in the last five years are eligible for coverage under this policy while waiting for OHIP approval.
      • Other family members, such as your siblings or parents, aren’t eligible dependants.

    • How to enroll eligible family members

      Your dependants won’t be automatically enrolled. You need to enroll your eligible family members. Here’s how:

      • Download an application form.
      • Take the completed form in person to the UHIP office at your University.
      • Bring documentation to show your family’s arrival to Canada (passport).
      • You will need to pay for UHIP coverage when you enroll them.

      You can see the current annual premium costs here.

    • It costs more if you enroll them late
      • You will need to pay a $500 late application fee if you don’t enroll your dependants within 30 days of the date they’re eligible.
      • There’s no discount for the time they had no coverage if you were late enrolling them. You will have to pay the premium for your dependant(s) as of one of the following:
        1. Date your dependant(s) arrived in Canada and became eligible for UHIP.
        2. First day of the month your term started at the University.
        3. Your employment start date at the University.
    • When will my family members’ UHIP coverage begin?

      Coverage begins the date they arrive in Canada, but no earlier than the 10th day of the month before your studies or employment begins.
      For example:

      Arrival in Canada August 5
      Start of your studies or employment September 1
      Start of UHIP coverage August 10
    • When will my dependants’ UHIP coverage end?

      Your dependant’s coverage ends whenever one of the following happens:

      • Your coverage ends. This happens on the last day of the month for which you purchased coverage.
      • Your dependant stops meeting the definition of an eligible dependant. Coverage ends on the last day of the month in which this happens.
      • Your dependant acquires OHIP coverage. Coverage ends on the date this becomes effective.
      • Your dependant is denied OHIP coverage. Coverage ends 24 months after the date he or she receives notification of this refusal.
      • Your status changes to that of visitor under a permit from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. Coverage ends on that date.
      • You or your dependant misuse your coverage card. Coverage ends on the date Cowan obtains evidence of this.
      • You or your dependant fail to report medical test results or submit false medical test reports to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada in order to obtain medical clearance. Coverage ends on the date Cowan obtains evidence of this.
    • If your University extends your coverage

      You must enroll your eligible dependant for the extension period, even if they weren’t enrolled in UHIP before. Only dependants with an exemption can opt out of UHIP.

    • Renew coverage at least 30 days before it expires

      You will need to renew UHIP coverage for your dependant family members each year, if they are still eligible.

    • How to renew family member coverage
      1. Download an application form.
      2. Take the completed form in person to the UHIP office at your University.
      3. Bring documentation (passport) to show your family’s arrival to Canada.
      4. You will need to pay for UHIP coverage when you enrol them.

    Find a Clinic/Doctor/Lab

    Knowing which health care providers accept UHIP is important and can save you money! Access Cowan’s Preferred Provider Network and find a health care provider close to you that will bill Cowan directly for medical services – at UHIP rates.

    Contact

    Have a question about UHIP’s coverage, your claim, or how to update your information?