Each year, the cost of prescription drugs and basic health and dental services, not covered by provincial health plans, take increasingly larger portions out of the limited budget of many students. To address this problem, the Canadian Federation of Students created the National Student Health Network. Established in 1985, the Federation’s health, dental and vision plan assists students’ associations with the design, negotiation, promotion, and administration of campus health and dental plans.
Through negotiations with Canada’s only non-profit insurance provider, Greenshield, the Federation offers the most comprehensive set of benefits available though a campus health plan:
- Prescription drugs with or without a pay direct drug card;
- Paramedical services: physiotherapist, speech pathologist, massage therapist, chiropractor, naturopath, and psychologist;
- Dental accident costs;
- Medical equipment/appliances;
- Accident or sickness related tutorial costs;
- Ambulance costs;
- Semi-private hospital rooms;
- Out of province emergency services;
- Accidental death and dismemberment insurance;
- Vision care/prescription glasses; and
- Managed dental care.
These benefits are available in component past, which allows a students’ association the opportunity to design a customized plan for its members, thus maintaining the principle of meeting students’ needs first and foremost.