IFH provides temporary health insurance to refugees, protected persons and refugee claimants in Canada. This occurs when not yet covered by a provincial or territorial health insurance plan. The coverage is also for eligible dependants. Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) delivers the program. FAS Benefits Administrators Limited (Vegreville, Alberta) administers the program. The General Inquiries contact is: (888) 242-2100.

You show the pharmacist your photograph-bearing document. It is called “Acknowledgement of Convention Refugee Claim”, or “Determination of Eligibility”, or “Certificate of IFH Eligibility.” You may see a code number on the document: IMM 1442. The coverage is one year at a time. You must renew the document each year. It ends when you get Convention Refugee status and OHIP. For Greater Toronto Area, we recommend a lead time of three months for the renewal each year. Each renewal requires a new set of photographs and a completed application.

Sometimes patients with IFH also have Ontario Drug Benefit coverage. This can be confusing. Such patients get the ODB coverage only through Ontario Works or Ontario Disability Support Programs. Those are the two systems that provide ODB coverage without Ontario Health Insurance (OHIP). Whether IFH or ODB is used seems to make no difference.