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Insurance Coverage During Pandemic 

What to do? 

Step 1: Check Government Link for your destination 

If your destination has a level 3 or 4 travel advisory there may be Emergency out of Country Restrictions. 

Step 2: Do your research 

Insurers will determine eligibility of claims based on time of departure and travel advisories to your destination. 

If you leave before the travel advisory was issued for your destination and contract the COVID 19 virus while at your destination, then your emergency travel coverage will be in effect. Your out of country emergency claim will be processed as normal. Subject to pre-existing conditions. If you are quarantined in the region then the insurer will extend your Emergency Travel coverage until you can be returned home. 

If you leave the country after a travel advisory has been issued then your insurer may not cover you or your dependents for emergency medical expenses incurred due to that illness.  

Step 3: Consult your Employee Benefit Booklet 

Some of our Insurers wording: 

Greenshield: No Coverage in Level 3 or Level 4 Countries 

GSC standard language excludes claims related to a travel advisory if a person chooses to travel to an area under advisory. 

Any claims arising directly or indirectly from any medical condition you suffer or contract in a specific country, region or city due to an epidemic or pandemic, if at the time of booking the trip (including delay of travel), or before your departure date, Global Affairs Canada (GAC) issued a formal travel warning advising Canadians to avoid all or non-essential travel to that specific country, region or city. In this exclusion “medical condition” is limited to the reason for which the formal travel warning was issued and includes complications arising from such medical condition. 

Canada Life (Formerly Great West Life): Coverage in Effect 

 Claims related to the novel coronavirus that occurred during travel to a country with travel advisory warnings will be treated and assessed like any other claim under your plan. While travel to countries with travel advisory warnings won’t automatically exclude members from coverage, plans do vary, so that’s why we’re assessing claims individually – just like we do for all medical emergency claims. 

Pacific Blue Cross: Coverage in Effect  

As of today, ICBA group benefits do not exclude claims incurred as a result of travel to areas where a travel advisory is in place, and we do not exclude claims related to COVID-19 (provided that those claims would have been eligible per the usual terms and conditions of the contract). Emergency out-of-country claims will still be covered based on the premise where the emergency is a sudden unexpected occurrence of an acute condition demanding immediate medical attention.  

Manulife: Coverage in Effect  

If a plan member travels and contracts COVID-19 after they leave home, this is a covered medical emergency. We will check to confirm the condition was not pre-existing, but if not reasonable treatment, hospitalization and quarantine will be covered until the member is cleared to return home. If a plan member is travelling and becomes quarantined and the day limit on the policy is exceeded, Manulife has made a decision to extend the coverage under our group policies until the quarantine period has been completed and the member can return home.  

There is nothing in our policies that states we will not cover a medical condition if there is a level 3 or 4 travel advisory issued (avoid nonessential travel or avoid all travel) for that condition in the country to which the member is travelling. 

Sunlife: Coverage in Effect 

When it comes to EHC and OOC, we will be treating illness due to the Coronavirus as any other medical emergency. This means there is no exclusion to treating someone because this is an epidemic vs. another type of medical emergency. 

DesjardinsCoverage in Effect 

Important update to March 13th InfoNote regarding coronavirus (COVID-19): 

For plans that include travel insurance, all eligible medical expenses including those related to COVID-19 will be covered for trips outside Canada regardless of the departure date.  

Short Term Disability During Quarantine 

If you are medically required to quarantine, cannot work and you have Short Term Disability coverage through your employer then may be eligible for benefits from day 1. Normal application processes will apply with the exception of a physician’s report in the event you are unable to see your doctor. The insurers will accept the below form in it’s place. 

Complete the below form:$file/Plan+Member+Confirmation+of+Illness+Form+-2020.pdf 


Employment Insurance During Quarantine 

The Government has waived the waiting period for those medically required to be quarantined. 

You will be eligible from day 1 of the quarantine. See link below: 

To apply for Employment Insurance refer to the below link: