This page provides information to Canadians about Montreal health
If you are considering a move to Montreal, health insurance is definitely
one of the issues that you have to think about. Illness and accidents
are unpredictable, and you do not want to be caught unprepared. Quebec’s
health care system is managed by the Régie de l’assurance
maladie du Québec (RAMQ) and those eligible for health insurance
must obtain a Medicare card. This card must be presented each time you
receive health services and should be carried at all times in case of
a medical emergency.
Individuals arriving from outside of Canada are eligible for Quebec health
insurance after a waiting period of three months. Upon arriving in Quebec,
even from another Canadian province, you must contact the RAMQ to fill
out an application to register for the health insurance plan. It is advisable
to contact RAMQ as soon as possible so there are no gaps in coverage.
It is important to note that RAMQ will not reimburse you for any medical
services received during the waiting period, and they recommend that you
purchase private insurance during this time. Those arriving from another
Canadian province become eligible for health insurance in Montreal when
they cease to be covered by their own province’s health plan. Until
that time, they must present their health card from their native province
when receiving health services.
Individuals covered by Montreal health insurance have free access to medical
services. People registered under the Public Drug Insurance Plan are also
covered for prescription medications. RAMQ covers certain dental and optometric
services, and provides a range of health services for individuals with
special needs, such as those requiring hearing and visual devices, ostomy
equipment, external breastforms, and other devices designed for physical
deficiencies. If you fail to present your health insurance card at the
time you receive medical treatment, or if your card has expired, you must
pay for the service rendered and apply to the RAMQ for a reimbursement.
How to Obtain a Medicare Card in Quebec
A health insurance card, also called a Medicare card, contains vital information
about its holder. Not only does it bear the person’s full name,
photograph and digital signature, but it also has a unique health insurance
number, date of birth, gender, and date of expiry. For those living in
Montreal or other areas of the province of Quebec, a Medicare card is
necessary to obtain government health coverage. It is valid for four years,
after which time it must be renewed and updated with a new picture and
When applying for health insurance, one must attach documents proving
their identity and residency in Quebec. A current photograph is also required.
Once eligibility for the Quebec health insurance plan is approved, the
candidate is notified by mail and the Medicare card should be received
within the next two weeks. For more information on health services, benefits
and the procedure on how to obtain Montreal health insurance, please visit
the RAMQ homepage.
Read more about Quebec Health Insurance.