Coverage outside of Alberta and Canada

The Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan (AHCIP) provides coverage for insured physician and hospital services in Alberta and elsewhere in Canada. Two sources of funding for medical treatment outside Canada are also provided: the Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan (AHCIP), and the Out-of-Country Health Services Committee.

Also read the Health Coverage Outside of Alberta brochure on the forms and brochures page.

Temporary absence/travelling

Albertans may be absent from the province of Alberta for various reasons and durations, and continue to be covered under the AHCIP. Under the Alberta Health Care Insurance Regulation and the Alberta Health Care Insurance Act, a person is considered “temporarily absent from Alberta” if the person:

  1. Stays in another province or territory for a period that will not exceed 12 consecutive months, or
  2. Stays outside Canada for a period that will not exceed 6 consecutive months, and the person intends to return to and maintain permanent residence in Alberta on the conclusion of the stay outside Alberta

If you are physically present in Alberta for at least 183 days in a 12 month period, you remain eligible for continued AHCIP coverage. If you are away longer, contact us.

Extended absence from Alberta

You must maintain your AHCIP coverage if you leave Alberta for another part of Canada and intend to return within 12 months, or leave for another country and intend to return within 6 months. If you are leaving for a longer period and intend to return to Alberta, you may be considered for one of the following extensions of coverage:

  • 4 years (48 months) for absence due to work, business or missionary service;
  • 2 years (24 months) for travel, personal visits or educational leave (sabbatical); or
  • The time period you are a full-time student at an accredited educational institute.

If you are physically present in Alberta for at least 183 days in a 12 month period, you remain eligible for continued AHCIP coverage. If you are away longer, contact us.

Recurring absence from Alberta

You may remain eligible for AHCIP coverage if, on a recurring basis, you are absent from Alberta for up to 212 days in a 12-month period for the purpose of vacation (for example, snowbirds).

Alberta Health covers only some (limited) physician and hospital expenses outside Alberta. It is strongly recommended that Alberta residents carry private supplementary insurance when travelling outside of Alberta to cover unforeseen emergency care and transportation, as these costs may be significant.