Best Health (and Dental) Insurance Options

What is the Best Health Insurance in Canada for Individuals?

Your best choice for an individual health insurance plan will depend on a few things like age, gender, province of residence, the type of health service costs you typically incur, and whether you have recently left an employer plan (in the last 60-90 days). Fortunately, BestQuote has the tools to help you find the answer. We give detailed price comparisons of the top four health (and dental) insurance companies in Canada (Manulife, Sun Life, GMS and Green Shield), present the coverage details in a comparison table to make it easy to review, and we are licensed in all the provinces in Canada (except Quebec), as well as the NWT. 

Get a free instant quote for replacement health insurance plans (when you have just left your employer and can avoid medical underwriting and waiting periods) or personal health insurance plans (when you will need to go through medical underwriting and get approved for coverage), review the coverage details, ask us questions, and purchase a plan online.

Health care costs are on the rise, and many costs, such as prescription drugs, are not covered by provincial plans. Being covered by your own private health insurance helps to control unexpected out-of-pocket expenses, as well as expected ones such as dental care and prescription medications. But don't select a plan based only on expected cost containment — don't overlook the fact that some of these plans can also provide valuable assistance in navigating the Canadian healthcare system in the event that you end up with a critical illness or chronic health situation.

Being covered for unexpected changes in health (that require recently developed (higher cost) drugs, or for a motorized scooter, for example) is an important consideration to evaluate when choosing which plan to choose. Having a private health plan that can help you obtain higher quality medical advice at the time of an unexpected critical illness or chronic sickness can be a life-saving feature worth paying a little extra for if you do not own a stand-alone critical illness plan that features that same assistance with the Canadian medical system.  

Let's face it: the Canadian medical system can provide remarkably different levels of healthcare to those who are critically ill. For example, for a person who becomes ill with a heart-related issue, as long as they live close to a major urban hospital and get assigned to one of its higher-quality specialists, the system can be world-class. But if that same person is subjected to regionalism (because they live near a suburban or rural hospital) or randomness (they don't get a special doctor), the outcome will be much different. And that difference can be life-altering. One person may recover fully after a world-class treatment and rehabilitation, and the other person will not be so lucky, unless they are covered by an insurance plan that provides them with access to a Best Doctors type level of diagnosis, treatment, and care. While you can purchase Best Doctors international private health insurance directly, you can also access Best Doctors second opinion services when you select a Sun Life health plan or buy a critical illness insurance policy.

A stethoscope on top of a medical formWhich people typically buy individual health insurance plans?

The following types of people should consider being covered by their own private supplemental health plan:

  • Anyone who will lose their group benefits due to retirement, loss of work, or a change of employment or marital status;
  • Self-employed individuals;
  • Retirees wanting to control healthcare costs;
  • Part-time workers not covered by an employer's group plan;
  • Workers of smaller businesses that don't offer group benefits.

How Does BestQuote Help You Compare Health Insurance Quotes?

We have a wide variety of plans to choose from and can compare benefits and make individual recommendations based on your age, current healthcare needs/expenses, and risk management issues. You will not find a better comparison quote for health and dental insurance anywhere in Canada. We have in-depth knowledge and experience in choosing between the available individual health and dental plans, and through our Canadian health insurance website, we also help our clients with wait-list insurance, Best Doctors insurance, Health and Welfare Trusts, international expatriate medical plans, and critical illness insurance.

Here is a quick snapshot of some health and dental plans we offer, with links to each company page where you can find more detailed information, get a quote and apply online:

Manulife Health and Dental Insurance 

FollowMe Insurance:

This is one of the top-selling plans in Canada. If you’re leaving the company where you work, you’re also leaving your company health plan. But you and your family can still have affordable, reliable insurance with coverage that may include prescription drugs, dental care, eyeglasses and more.

Apply within 90 days of the end of your employer group health coverage, and your acceptance is guaranteed. No medical questions are required at the time of application. Solid coverage at affordable rates, fast and easy electronic claims, and no waiting period.

There are four different plans to choose from: two with dental coverage (Essential Plus and Premier) and two without dental coverage (Basic and Essential).

FlexCare Plans:

Nine different plans to choose from. Three Core plans (Dental, Drug, or Combo), each with three different benefit levels (Starter, Basic, or Enhanced). 

These plans require a medical questionnaire and application process, which may take time or end up not being issued. The plans can be a bit less expensive than FollowMe (and certain waiting periods apply before full coverage begins).

Association Plans:

These plans are usually for small groups but can be issued on an individual basis. There are four plans to choose from, each with varying coverage levels. These plans are also medically underwritten and involve waiting periods before full coverage begins. There are no online applications.

GMS Health and Dental Insurance

Replacement Health Plans:

For people transitioning from an employer plan to a private plan of their own. Applications must be made within 60 days of the employer plan ending.

There are three different plans to choose from: PremierPlan, ChoicePlan, and EssentialPlan. You can add additional benefits such as dental, drugs, enhanced drugs, travel, and/or hospital cash.  

Personal Health Plans:

For people who have waited too long to sign up for a Replacement Health Plan or have not ever been covered by an employer plan but would like to get started in order to plan for and protect against ongoing higher expenses.

There are three plans to choose from: Basic Plan, ExtendaPlan, and OmniPlan. You can then add additional benefits such as dental, drugs, enhanced drugs, travel, and/or hospital cash. 

Sun Life Financial Health (and Dental) Insurance

Health Coverage Choice

Replacement coverage with no questionnaire as long as you enrol within 90 days of being covered by a previous employer group plan. There are five plans to choose from, three with dental and two without. All plans come with Best Doctors consultation service.

Personal Health Insurance

Supplemental health and dental plans, which are fully underwritten for individuals or families. Again, there are five plans to choose from: three with dental coverage and two without.

Click the links above to find out more.