A group of students sitting at desks wearing blue, turquoise and white medical scrubs

Health insurance

As an international student, health insurance is mandatory to attend any programs at Georgian College. You must be registered into courses in an academic semester or registered for a work term/co-op term in Banner (Georgian’s student information system) for health insurance coverage to begin for that term.

COVID-19 health insurance coverage update

For COVID-19 coverage information, please visit the guard.me website.

If you are planning to arrive in Canada earlier than the insurance coverage date, you must purchase an appropriate insurance plan to cover any medical expenses from the day you arrive. To purchase early arrival health insurance at a discounted rate, visit the guard.me website.

guard.me International Insurance

Insurance is provided through a company called guard.me International Insurance. This insurance coverage is for emergency health conditions and anything new (flu, sore throat, rash, etc.) that starts after your insurance coverage begins (the plan does not cover pre-existing conditions).

If you do not register into courses in an academic semester or do not register for a work-term/co-op term in Banner, you will not be covered by health insurance. If you are out of the normal program progression, you may have to pay additional health insurance fees. It is your responsibility to ensure you have health insurance while in Canada by checking with the International Centre.

It is important that you download the guard.me insurance card once you receive it in your college student email ([email protected]). Failure to bring your insurance card when visiting the medical facility could result in having to pay for your medical expenses out of your pocket.

Insurance coverage dates

English Language Studies (EAPC and ESLG)

YearTermInsurance start dateInsurance end date
2020FallSept. 1, 2020Dec. 31, 2020
2020Fall, part BNov. 2, 2020Dec. 31, 2020
2021WinterJan. 1, 2021April 30, 2021
2021Winter, part BMarch 2, 2021April 30, 2021
2021SummerMay 1, 2021Aug. 31, 2021
2021Summer, part BJune 29, 2021Aug. 31, 2021

Postsecondary students

YearTermInsurance start dateInsurance end date
2020FallSept. 1, 2020Aug. 31, 2021
2021WinterJan. 1, 2021Aug. 31, 2021
2021SummerMay 1, 2021Aug. 31, 2021
2021FallSept. 1, 2021Aug. 31, 2022
2022WinterJan. 1, 2022Aug. 31, 2022
2022SummerMay 1, 2022Aug. 31, 2022

What’s included in your plan

As an international student enrolled in a postsecondary program at Georgian College, you have insurance coverage from guard.me and a health and dental plan from Georgian College Students’ Association/mystudentplan.

guard.me international insurance logo

guard.me International Insurance

This insurance coverage is for emergency health conditions and anything new (flu, sore throat, rash, etc.) that starts after your insurance coverage begins. The plan does not cover pre-existing conditions.


  • hospital and walk-in clinic visits
  • x-rays and lab testing
  • physician/surgeon
  • psychiatric hospitalization
  • psychotherapy
  • eye exams
  • paramedic services
  • physiotherapy/speech therapy
  • private nursing
  • ambulance
  • prescription drugs
  • dental – accidental injury
  • dental – emergency
  • medical equipment and supplies
  • accessibility
  • immunization
  • maternity
  • family transportation
  • air evacuation/return home
  • trauma counseling

Check your student email for your benefits card (often found in your junk mail folder).

You also have the option of purchasing insurance for your dependents.

Georgian College Students' Association (GCSA) my student plan logo

GCSA mystudentplan

This health and dental plan is for most non-emergency health and dental needs (dental check-up, physiotherapy, massage therapy, etc.).


  • physiotherapist
  • speech therapist
  • psychologist/social worker
  • registered massage and athletic therapist
  • (above services require a doctor’s note)
  • chiropractor
  • naturopath
  • vision
  • orthopedics


  • annual exams
  • recall exams
  • diagnostic
  • preventative
  • minor restorative
  • extractions
  • oral surgery
  • endodontic
  • periodontic
  • major restorative

EAP students do not have this coverage.

You also have the option of purchasing health and dental coverage for your dependents.

For details, visit the Benefits Plan Office in A159 at the Barrie Campus.

Additional student support

Through guard.me, international students have access to great resources including mobileDOCTOR and keep.meSAFE.


If you have a medical concern that isn’t urgent and is not an emergency, mobileDOCTOR lets you connect with a doctor from the comfort of your home through a mobile device or computer without going to the clinic

Available anytime, anywhere through your computer or mobile device, mobile doctors can provide advice, diagnosis and prescriptions online.  

Treatment can be provided for asthma, cold and flu, cough, ear ache, hives, infection, migraine, pink eye, sinus infection, sore throat, urinary tract infection, vomiting, diarrhea and many more. 

Sign up for MobileDOCTOR online. You will need your guard.me policy number.


  • Keep.meSAFE offers free service in your preferred language for help with many things including; stress, anxiety, feeling alone, culture shock, feeling homesick and more. 
  • It is a safe and confidential service that you can access for FREE at any time of the day or night from your mobile device or computer. 
  • Watch the video to see how it works. 
  • Download the My SSP app from the Apple Store.
  • Download the My SSP app from the Google Play Store.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

What if I arrive in Canada before my health insurance begins?Georgian College Chevron

If you arrive before the insurance start date, it is important that you purchase your own health insurance from the date of arrival in Canada up to the insurance start date. Please visit guard.me International Insurance to apply for insurance coverage for additional days.

What can I do for my family members? Can they purchase health insurance?Georgian College Chevron

Dependents (spouses and children) of registered students are able to purchase health insurance through guard.me at a discounted rate. Visit the guard.me and click on “Dependents” to proceed. You will need your policy number to purchase insurance for dependents.

If you need to access medical facilities for your dependents while you are waiting for your insurance card, you are encouraged to do so. You will have to pay for the expense upfront, and make sure you keep the receipt and related notes of these visits.

Important: One you receive your policy number, you have until the end of the month to add your dependents to be able to back-date your insurance. Here are the deadlines to add your dependents to allow back-date:

  • Fall: Sept. 30
  • Winter: Jan. 31
  • Summer: May 31

Will I receive a health insurance card?Georgian College Chevron

You will receive an email to your Georgian College email account after the add/drop period in your first semester at Georgian*. Be sure to check your spam or junk folder. The email will include an electronic PDF version of your guard.me insurance card. You will not receive a physical card, so you must print the card on your own.

Keep the ID card with you in your wallet for proof of health insurance coverage. You will also receive a temporary password you can use to log in your account at the guard.me website to allow you access to your ID card and view the status of any claims.

Once you are registered into courses in an academic semester or you are registered for a work term/co-op term in Banner, your coverage for health insurance will begin for that term. Even though you receive your card after the start of your first semester, you are covered from the first day of your first month. If you need to seek medical care before you receive your card, make sure you are familiar with what is covered. Keep all of your receipts so that you may submit your claim online once you receive your card.

If you still cannot find your policy information a week after add/drop, please email [email protected] or visit your Segal International Centre on campus.

* EAP students will receive a new health card at the start of each semester.

When do I receive a health insurance card?Georgian College Chevron

In most cases, you will receive them in your student email after add/drop date. If you do not receive the insurance card by the end of the week after add/drop, please contact us at [email protected].

If you are on a co-op term, the timing will be different.

Do I need insurance for co-op semester?Georgian College Chevron

Yes. All registered international students at Georgian College are required to have guard.me insurance. As long as you are registered on Banner, you will be insured. This means although you do not pay tuition fee in co-op semester, you will have to pay for the insurance fee.

Expect a charge on your Banner account once you register for your co-op. This could mean that if you register late, even if it is after add/drop, you can have health insurance charge on your Banner account at that point. When you are on co-op, you will have until the next course registration to pay off your balance.

What if I do not receive an email from guard.me to my student email account?Georgian College Chevron

If you do not receive an email from guard.me with your health insurance card, check to make sure you are registered on Banner. If you are registered in courses or co-op/work term and don’t have a health insurance card, please drop by the Segal International Centre (C279) and let us know. If you are not registered in courses or co-op/work term, please register on Banner or visit the Office of the Registrar. Don’t forget to check your spam or junk email folders for the email.

How can I find a medical clinic near me?Georgian College Chevron

To find the clinic closest to your home, visit guard.me. Once you fill in your address, it will give you a list of the closest clinics. The clinics listed are all direct billing locations.

You can still visit a clinic that isn’t on the list but you will have to pay for the service up front.

What is a claim?Georgian College Chevron

If you visit the doctor’s office without your guard.me card or visit a health facility that does not provide direct billing, you will be asked to pay up front for your medical expenses. Keep your receipt so you can make a claim with guard.me and be refunded.

How do I submit a claim?Georgian College Chevron

You can make a claim online if the receipt is under $1,000 by visiting guard.me and clicking on My Claim, then Making a Claim. You will be asked to enter your policy number and date of birth. Click Submit and continue the steps through the claim process. On the last page, you will be asked to fill in your address. Please ensure your address details are accurate as this is where the cheque will be mailed. You will also be asked to scan and attach your receipt(s). If your receipt is over $1,000, you will have to submit your claim by mail.

Can I opt out of my guard.me health insurance?Georgian College Chevron

guard.me health insurance is mandatory for all international students who are registered for courses or a co-op/work term in Banner. That means that if you’re currently in courses or on a co-op/work term, you can’t opt-out, and this includes students with OHIP coverage.

How can I learn more about my Georgian College Students’ Association (GCSA) insurance?Georgian College Chevron

Get more information on GCSA insurance coverage. This coverage applies to postsecondary students in a full-time diploma, degree, or certificate program.

What if I have a break between my studies, e.g. between EAP and the start of postsecondary?Georgian College Chevron

If the coverage date on your guard.me card is expiring and you will be coming back to study at Georgian College, you can purchase health insurance for the gap between programs. Visit guard.me and follow the steps for “gap student.”

Please refer to the coverage dates above to be sure that you don’t purchase health insurance for longer then you need.

Common coverage inquiriesGeorgian College Chevron
  • Dermatologist: To visit a dermatologist, you will likely have to be referred by a doctor which means you will need to visit the doctor’s office first. Remember, guard.me doesn’t cover any pre-existing conditions (including acne).
    If you are unsure whether your dermatologist visit will be covered, email [email protected].
  • Dentist: guard.me International Insurance will only cover a visit to a dentist if it’s an emergency or immediate relief of pain or suffering. If you are a postsecondary student, you may be eligible under mystudent plan.
  • Eye doctor: You will be covered for one non-emergency eye exam per year up to a maximum of $120. There is no insurance coverage for contacts or glasses.
  • Immunizations: You will be covered up to $150 for program/course required immunizations. Any immunizations that are not required for your program/course will not be covered.
  • If you are unsure what us covered by guard.me, contact the guard.me claims department at 1.888.756.8428 or email [email protected].
Will I have health insurance after I graduate?Georgian College Chevron

Your guard.me insurance is valid until the expiry date, even after your graduation.

It is strongly recommended to extend your guard.me insurance if you are not going to have any other insurance coverage.

In order to be covered under Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP), you will need the physical copy of your Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP). Because of this, it may be a while before you will be eligible for OHIP coverage. For more information, check the OHIP eligibility and read the PGWP processing times.

You must extend your guard.me insurance within 30 days from the expiry of your current guard.me policy. You can purchase up to maximum of six months. Please visit guard.me and click on “Grad student” to purchase the insurance.

What if I withdraw from Georgian?Georgian College Chevron

If you officially withdraw from the college (or transfer to another institution) after the add/drop deadline, your health insurance coverage will not be terminated and fees will not be refunded. Your health insurance will expire on the date indicated on your health card.

What if I don’t register for courses/co-op in Banner?Georgian College Chevron

If you do not register into courses in an academic semester or do not register for a work-term/co-op term in Banner, you will not be covered by health insurance. It is your responsibility to ensure you have health insurance while in Canada by checking with the International Centre. If you are out of the normal program progression, it is your responsibility to ensure you have health insurance by checking with the International Centre. You may have to pay additional health insurance fees due to your irregular program progression.

Why am I being charged twice for the insurance fee more than once in the same academic year?Georgian College Chevron

Students can be charged insurance in more than one semester, in an academic year, due to program changes, progression changes/being out of sequence or co-op registration.

This additional charge will be removed from your account by the following dates;

  • Winter 2021: Jan. 29
  • Summer 2021: May 21

If the charge has not been removed, please contact [email protected]

Want to learn more about studying at Georgian as an international student?

Georgian Canada

Georgian’s international team is here to help you find a program that is right for you and help you settle into your new home at one of our seven campuses in Ontario.

Contact information

Segal International Centre
C279, Barrie Campus
705.728.1968, ext. 1218

View all international contact information