PEI Health Card

You must have a valid PEI Health Card to receive publicly funded health care services in Prince Edward Island (PEI). If you do not have a PEI Health Card you will be billed for hospital and physician services.

Your health card contains an 8-digit number called your Personal Health Number (PHN). It also includes other important information such as your name, birth date, sex, address and card expiry date. You will be asked for your health card each time you visit a doctor’s office or undergo a medical test or treatment at a health facility. Your pharmacist will also require your health card to record your prescription medications in the PEI Drug Information System.

Am I eligible?

If you are a new resident of PEI, you may be eligible for a PEI Health Card. You can apply as soon as you arrive in the province. 

You are considered a resident of PEI if:

  • you are legally in Canada; and
  • PEI is your primary residence for at least six months plus a day of each year.

You are not eligible for a PEI Health Card, if you are:

  • an International student (unable to work off campus), tourist, transient or visitor to PEI;
  • a member of the Canadian Armed Forces;
  • an inmate of a Federal Penitentiary; or
  • eligible for certain services under other government programs, such as the Interim Federal Health Program for Refugees, Workers Compensation or the Department of Veterans Affairs.

For further information, please refer to the Health Services Payment Act Regulations [PDF | 939 KB].

How do I register?

To register for a PEI Health Card, submit a completed health card application [PDF | 849 KB] and required documentation to:

Will my health card need to be renewed?

Yes. PEI Health Cards are renewed every five years. You will receive a renewal notice in the mail approximately two months before your card will expire. 

How do I change my address or contact information?

It is important for PEI Medicare to have your current address and contact information to be able to communicate with you and to ensure continued health care coverage. Call 1-800-321-5492 to notify of any changes.

Am I eligible if I move to PEI from another province?

Yes. You can register for a PEI Health Card as soon as you arrive in the province. However, you will still be covered by your former province of residence for the first three months. PEI coverage will begin on the first day of the third month following the date you make permanent residence in the province. For example, if you arrive July 4, you will be eligible on October 1. 

Am I eligible if I move to PEI from outside Canada?

You may be eligible for first day coverage. Submit a completed PEI Health Card Application [PDF | 849 KB] and the following documentation:

  • confirmation of permanent residency document or PR card if you are a new permanent resident
  • valid Canadian passport if you are a returning Canadian citizen from another country; or
  • proof of Canadian citizenship certificate if you are a Canadian citizen born outside of Canada.

You may be eligible as a spouse of a Canadian citizen (under spousal sponsorship) assuming residence in PEI for the first time, contact PEI Medicare for further information.

Am I eligible if I move to PEI with a work permit?

You may be eligible for first day coverage. You must submit a completed PEI Health Card Application [PDF | 849 KB] and the following documentation:

  • copy of a valid work permit which must entitle you to legally work within PEI for at least 183 days (PEI Medicare may request a proof of employment letter); and
  • copy of a valid passport.

If you are in Canada on a ministerial permit, contact PEI Medicare at 1-800-321-5492 to discuss your eligibility.

If I am an international student studying in PEI, am I eligible?

As of March 1, 2019, coverage will be granted/renewed on a yearly basis.

International students (post secondary) who wish to obtain a PEI Health Card must submit a completed health card application [PDF | 849 KB] along with the following documentation:

  • copy of a valid study permit indicating that you can work off campus (copy to be submitted for yearly extensions); 
  • verification of current, full-time enrolment from a designated learning institution (renewal to be submitted yearly).  Note:  this can be requested from your school (UPEI will release this directly to Health PEI - the request form is available in myUPEI); and
  • copy of a valid passport.

          Note:  PEI Medicare will not authorize acceptance letters, tuition cost forms or student ID cards.

If you are a spouse of an international student, you may be eligible by submitting a completed PEI Health Card Application [PDF | 849 KB] along with the following documentation:

  • visitor permit
  • marriage certificate

A dependent child of an international student may also be eligible by submitting a completed PEI Health Card Application [PDF | 849 KB] along with the following documentation:

  • visitor permit/study permit
  • birth certificate

PEI Medicare may also request proof of residency (ie. rental/lease agreement, letter of enrolment from school, etc.), if applicable.

Am I covered when I travel outside of PEI?

If you are traveling within Canada, your PEI Health Card will cover you for emergency or sudden illness health care services. Notify PEI Medicare if your absence will exceed one month to help avoid any delay in payment for an out-of-province service. Provide your departure and return dates, destination and reason for absence. For example, a student at an off-Island university, an extended winter vacation, or a sabbatical leave.

If you are traveling outside Canada, your PEI Health Card will cover you for emergency or sudden illness health care services. The cost for services outside Canada may be considerably higher and you will be required to pay medical costs up front. You can submit your detailed invoice and proof of payment within six months of the date of service to:

          PEI Medicare
          c/o Health PEI
          126 Douses Road
          PO Box 3000
          Montague, PE   C0A 1R0

You will be reimbursed at PEI rates in Canadian currency; however, you will be responsible to pay the difference between the amount charged and the amount paid by PEI Medicare. Purchasing private medical insurance for the period you are away is strongly encouraged.

If I go to school out-of-province, will I be covered?

Island students who will be studying outside of the province must notify PEI Medicare of their plans at the beginning of each school year by calling 1-800-321-5492 to ensure they have appropriate medical coverage. If you will be studying within Canada and have a valid PEI Health Card, you will be insured for emergency health services or sudden illness care. Such emergency care includes visiting an emergency department or walk-in clinic for a sudden or life-threatening illness, and being admitted to hospital for an emergency procedure or treatment.

For non-emergency care such as elective surgeries and treatments, or treatment for a chronic condition or ailment, prior approval is required from Health PEI for the service to be insured.  

If you are studying outside of Canada, purchasing additional private insurance is strongly encouraged.

If I'm working out-of-province or outside of Canada, will I be covered?

Although PEI may be your primary residence and your job requires you to live and work out-of-province or outside of Canada for an extended period of time, you must notify PEI Medicare by calling 1-800-321-5492 to ensure you have appropriate medical coverage. 

Additional private insurance is strongly encouraged while outside of Canada.

What should I do if I leave PEI permanently?

It is extremely important that you register in your new province of residence within 30 days of moving to ensure uninterrupted coverage. If you stay in Canada, you will remain eligible for PEI health coverage until the first day of the third month when your new province will begin coverage. 

If you plan to leave Canada permanently, your coverage will be terminated the day you leave PEI.

What if I lost my health card?

If your PEI Health Card is lost or stolen, you can request a replacement card. The fee is $10 for each card, with a maximum fee of $50 per household. 

Submit a completed Request for a Replacement Health Card [PDF | 193 KB] along with a cheque or money order made payable to Health PEI and send to:

          PEI Medicare 
          c/o Health PEI
          16 Garfield Street
          PO Box 2000
          Charlottetown, PE   C1A 7N8

Or, you can request a replacement health card and make payment at any Access PEI Centre location.

If your name has changed, or if you have received a card with incorrect information, you can Request a Replacement Health Card [PDF | 193 KB] free of charge.

What types of services are covered with my PEI Health Card?

Your PEI Health Card will allow you to access a wide range of health care services. For example, you will be covered for most physician and in-hospital services, as well as other services offered by Health PEI such as home care, palliative care, long-term care, addiction services, mental health services, drug programs through PEI Pharmacare, and primary care services (dental public health services, chronic disease prevention and management, public health nursing, diabetes program, community nutrition, cancer screening programs, speech language pathology services, etc.). Ambulance services are not generally covered, however they are subsidized for Island residents in certain situations. Detailed information on the cost of in-province and out-of-province ambulance services for Island residents and non-residents can be found by visiting Ambulance Services

How do I register my intention to be an organ or tissue donor?

To register your intention to become an organ or tissue donor, complete the Intent to Donate form [PDF | 251 KB] and mail it to:

          PEI Medicare
          c/o Health PEI
          126 Douses Road
          PO Box 3000
          Montague, PE   C0A 1R0

As always, you are encouraged to discuss your decision to become an organ and tissue donor with your family. 

Who can I contact about my health card?

PEI Medicare
c/o Health PEI
126 Douses Road
Montague, PE C0A 1R0

Telephone: (902) 838-0900 
Toll-free:  1-800-321-5492
Fax: (902) 838-0940
    

PEI Medicare Satellite Office
c/o Health PEI
16 Garfield Street 
PO Box 2000
Charlottetown PE, C1A 7N8

Telephone: (902) 368-6130
Fax: (902) 368-6136
 

Published date: 
September 11, 2019
Health PEI logo

General Inquiries

Health PEI
16 Garfield Street
PO Box 2000
Charlottetown, PE   C1A 7N8

Phone: 902-368-6130
Fax: 902-368-6136

healthpei@gov.pe.ca

Your Health Privacy

Media Inquiries
Phone: 902-368-6135

Health PEI Board of Directors
Phone: 902-368-4637

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest emergency department.

If you are unsure what to do about a health issue or if you need health information, call 8-1-1.

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