Health and Dental Plan

Health and Dental Benefits Service – ** New for 2021-22 **

In March of 2021, the Students’ Union held a referendum; the referendum passed with 88.7% in favour of the students’ union pursuing an extended health and dental plan for its membership at an annual cost of $250, subject to a maximum increase of 5% annually.
We have included some common questions about the Health and Dental Benefits Service below and will be updating this page with important information about the plan eligibility, benefit coverage, opting out and more. Be sure to check back for updates as we get closer to the beginning of the 2021/2022 school year.  

What are extended health and dental benefits?

Student extended health and dental plans are common to virtually every college and university in Canada, and just like at Coast Mountain College, are provided by the Students’ Union. The Coast Mountain Students’ Union’s plan will provide access to thousands of dollars in coverage for less than $21 per month, making it among the least expensive extended medical coverage in the country. 

Who is eligible? 

The health and dental plan service is applied universally to eligible students; eligible students are those enrolled in 6 units or more, or programs that are 26 weeks or longer.

I’m not in BC, can I still use my plan?

The plan can be used for any services accessed within Canada, not just BC.

What’s included in the coverage?
The Students’ Union health and dental plan will provide a huge range of benefits that help students with medical and other issues. This is what coverage looks like: 

  • 80% coverage for prescription medications up to $2,000 per year;
  • Coverage of $50 per visit for treatments by paramedical providers (physiotherapist, chiropractor, etc) with total coverage of up to $300 per year per type of treatment;
  • Up to $525 per year in coverage for counselling by a social worker or psychologist (provided at $75 per visit);
  • Vision coverage at $225 every two years ($100 every two years for eye exams plus $125 every two years for prescription glasses, contacts, etc);
  • Dental coverage of up to $700 per year for preventative and restorative work at 80% coverage;
  • Travel insurance for trips of up to 90 days;
  • A comprehensive Accidental death and dismemberment benefit plan;
  • A legal advisory service that provides telephone legal assistance and access to legal representation at a discount;
  • Access to online medical treatment in the form of a free subscription to an online medical practice.


  • Eligible students will have coverage beginning in the month of your program start date and ending twelve months later;
  • Are you a returning student or new to the health and dental plan?  You’ll be in a temporary “blackout” or inactive period that begins on the first day of coverage and is generally around 45 days in duration. Don’t worry. You still are covered during this time, however, you will be unable to bill for services directly. Save any receipts for health or dental costs that are incurred during this period and you will be able to register for online services at GSC and submit your claims electronically after the blackout period has ended.
  • Adding dependents is done through our third-party data administrator J & D Benefits. After the blackout period is over you will receive an email from J & D Benefits with a link to register on your personal online portal. This portal allows you to assign a beneficiary for your Accidental Death/Dismemberment Benefit. Registration with Green Shield Canada (GSC) without having registered with J & D Benefits is still possible. You can revisit the portal later to do this but if you’re wanting to add dependents it must be done prior to the date in your email (the last day of the month in which you receive the email).
  • Once you have been enrolled you will receive an email with information about how to access your plan, the plan details, how to make claims and how to add dependents to your plan;
  • For any questions about the plan, contact the Students’ Union: or 250-635-6511 ext. 5458. 


Am I eligible to opt out?

Like every other college or university, the health and dental plan at Coast Mountain College is a universal service, meaning that all eligible students are included. However, you can opt-out if you meet one of the following requirements:

  • you have comparable, existing coverage through a parent, spouse, employer or personal plan
  • you are Status First Nations or Inuit and hold existing coverage through First Nations Health Authority or other
  • you are an international student currently not in Canada (you must be in Canada to receive health and dental services, and therefore use the student benefits)

If you’re not sure whether you qualify to opt out, contact us.

What is equivalent coverage?

Extended health and dental insurance commonly includes such benefits as prescription medication, paramedical and extended health services and products, and comprehensive dental coverage, each at a level that provides tangible benefits. So equivalent coverage would be a plan that has these essential elements, and is generally provided through a parent, spouse or employer. Examples of things that are not equivalent coverage include basic BC government (or other provincial) medical coverage, travel insurance, emergency medical coverage, and certain individual coverage packages.

Equivalent coverage doesn’t necessarily mean good coverage

Many benefit plans can still leave you with huge financial shortfalls for necessary treatments, prescription drugs or dental procedures. Compare your existing coverage and your bills from last year, and make sure you have enough coverage through your current benefit plan before opting out of the Students’ Union’s plan (details announced soon). If you don’t think your current coverage is sufficient, consider keeping the Students’ Union coverage as well in order to make sure you are fully covered (having two plans means that you can claim from one plan for expenses that are not covered by the other).

How do I opt out?

You can access the online form to request an opt-out here:

Generally, the deadline is 30 days after the start date for your program. Contact the students’ union if you are unsure of the health and dental payment due date/opt out deadline. Late requests to opt out cannot be accepted because those not opted out by the deadline will have already been enrolled in the Students’ Union’s plan.

When does my opt out take effect?

After completing the opt out process, a request to opt out is sent to the Students’ Union, who processes the request by evaluating your information and ensuring that the equivalent coverage is valid. This process can sometimes take a few days or even a few weeks when volumes are high. Be sure to check your student record after the opt out deadline to ensure the fee is removed, and contact the Students’ Union if it looks as though your opt out was not successful.

How long does my opt out last?

Once you have applied to opt out and your request has been accepted, your student record is updated to reflect that you have declined the service in respect of your equivalent coverage. This remains your status for the length of your time at Coast Mountain College.

Can I opt back into the plan if I lose my coverage?

Yes, you can apply to be re-added to the plan if the coverage you supplied when opting out has been discontinued through no fault of your own (as in you lost a job, you aged out of parental coverage, etc). To opt back into the plan, you need to contact the Students’ Union within 30 days of losing your existing coverage to apply for readmission to the Students’ Union’s plan.

Do Status First Nations students need to opt out? 

The short answer is ‘yes, unless you want to keep both’.

All status First Nation Students who are not covered by a First Nations organization as a part of a funding agreement, such as Nisga’a Lisims students, are eligible for health benefits through the First Nations Health Authority. The First Nations Health Authority covers specific health-related items and services to meet the medical and dental needs of FNHA clients. Many First Nations clients find it advantageous to keep their Coast Mountain Student Union benefits as students are able to stack their coverage rates and pay less out-of-pocket expenses when receiving health related items and services. To keep yourself informed of your coverage rates please visit and the Coast Mountain Student Union Plan, which will be available soon.