Managing the cost of healthcare

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young woman paying bills

​As you take more responsibility for your health in the adult healthcare system, you will need to know how to handle the financial side of your treatment. Provincial health insurance programs can cover the costs of some types of pain treatment, but you might need to have private health insurance for others. This is why it is worth finding out about insurance coverage and other options to cover treatment costs.

It is important to understand the type of insurance coverage you are eligible for. Insurance coverage can depend on the type of condition that you have, for example, whether your pain results from an injury or a from a chronic health condition. Read below for more specific information about different insurance that may cover some or all of your healthcare costs.

Health insurance you were injured in a motor vehicle accident

Motor vehicle accident (MVA) insurance is a type of insurance that covers the rehabilitation you would need if your injuries were caused by a motor vehicle accident. The insurance might cover the following services:

  • medications
  • physical therapies
  • psychological therapies
  • assistive devices (for example wheelchairs)
  • modifications to your home or vehicle
  • assessments
  • a case manager and other optional benefits listed in your insurance policy.

This system is comprehensive but is also quite complex and sometimes difficult to navigate. It might be helpful to consult with a personal injury lawyer, accident benefit consultant or case manager to steer you in the right direction.

Health insurance if your pain does not result from an accidental injury

If your pain results from something other than an accident and you live in Canada, province-wide programs can insure you. People living in Ontario, for instance, can access the Ontario Health Insurance Program (OHIP). The Government of Canada provides information about each province’s health insurance program. Under your provincial insurance, you may have access to various healthcare services and co-ordinated care.

Health services for teens and young adults

Some communities provide health services covered under provincial healthcare plans specific to the needs of people aged 12 to 24. Contact your family doctor or other local provider for specific details for your community.

Home services

You may also be able to access services for chronic and long-term medical disorders at home through government and health care region services.

Insurance through your employer

If you are employed, it is important to know which benefits, if any, you can access under your workplace benefits. Some insurance plans might cover the cost of a certain amount of physical therapy or psychological therapy sessions each year, for example. Talk to your HR department or supervisor about any options that may be available.

Cover for treatment after workplace injuries

If your pain results from a workplace injury, you are entitled to insurance under provincial workers’ compensation programs. For more information about the programs in your area, visit the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety​.

The main steps to claiming workers compensation are to:

  • seek medical attention as soon as possible after the workplace accident
  • report or have someone report the injury to your supervisor
  • file an insurance claim through the workplace insurance board for your province.

Teens aged under 16 must have a parent or guardian sign the claim. The insurance will cover rehabilitation and medical needs as recommended by your physician.

Last updated: May 2nd 2016