How to extend your BC Medical Services Plan (MSP)

Overview of process

When to apply: Immediately after receiving your new immigration document (for example, a study permit extension or a post-graduation work permit) or after arriving in British Columbia from a trip outside the province

Cost: $75 per month for study permit holders

Processing time: 1 to 2 months. Coverage begins once the MSP extension application has been processed

How: Apply online (recommended) or by mail. Review the UBC MSP Extension Guide to prepare your MSP Extension online application.

Supporting documents: 

  • International students: Copy of valid study permit OR work permit (such as a post-graduation or spouse/partner work permit)
  • Canadian students: Copy of proof of status (e.g., Canadian permanent resident card, a record of landing, confirmation of permanent residence letter, Canadian passport, birth certificate, citizenship card, or citizenship certificate)
  • Family members: Copy of visitor record, study permit, spouse/partner work permit, or passport stamp showing arrival date to Canada

Additional documents may be needed


Back to top

How having maintained status impacts your MSP coverage

You will have “maintained status” (formerly called “implied status”) if all of the following applies to you:

  • You applied for a new immigration document, such as a study or work permit, before the old one expired.
  • You remain in Canada.
  • You won’t receive a new immigration document before your old one expires.

Since your BC MSP will end on the expiry date of your current immigration document, you must take action to get health insurance coverage before your MSP expires. Without valid health insurance, you will need to pay for any health services. See how to get MSP temporary coverage.

You might not be able to be covered under MSP until you reapply and provide proof of your new immigration document such as a copy of your study permit or post-graduation work permit. Be sure to get temporary private health insurance, such as the Global Campus Health Plan to cover you until you can reinstate your MSP coverage.

Back to top

Tips for the process

The easiest way to apply is to submit an application online.

If you decide to submit a paper application by mail, consider using a secure mailing method such as Canada Post Xpresspost. You should also include a cover letter if requesting MSP temporary coverage —check the MSP Extension Sample Letter.

International students

Temporary BC residents (such as international students and workers) will typically be issued a non-photo BC Services Card (formerly known as “BC CareCard”). Carry your card with you as well as a digital or paper copy of your valid study permit or work permit (such as post-graduation or spouse/partner work permit).

Back to top

Get important information on MSP

Learn about how to maintain your MSP coverage, how to make payments, what happens if you will be outside of BC and more.


Back to top

If you have questions

To confirm your eligibility and coverage, contact MSP.

For all other questions related to international health insurance, contact the Global Engagement Office.

Back to top

International Student Guide

Find everything you need to know about life as an international student at UBC’s Okanagan campus.

View the guide

Back to top