Medical Transportation

​​​​​​​Medical Transportation Service Updates​

Health Benefits has resumed normal service and coverage of medical transportation (MT) health benefits so you can continue to access the care you need. MT benefits can support you to access medically-necessary health services that are not available where you live.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Health Benefits continues to provide MT benefits to support clients needing to self-isolate. Contact 1-888-305-1505 to request support for self-isolation. The Health Benefits Isolation Support team is available seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Learn more here.

If you find yourself with self-isolation needs or concerns due to COVID-19, the First Nations Health Authority (FNHA) can support you.

The Health Benefits Isolation Support team is available to support your self-isolation travel needs seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Call 1-888-305-1505.

Individuals may be eligible for isolation support if they are unable to obtain their own accommodations and:

• are returning to Cana​da from international travel including the United States;

• are confirmed as having COVID-19 or have been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19;

• are returning to community from a high-risk location or environment including work camps/care facilities/communities experiencing an outbreak;

• belong to vulnerable population groups identified below that would have difficulties self-isolating due to issues around transportation, food delivery, medical requirements, or where COVID-19 is present in the community; 

• have symptoms of COVID-19 but no confirmed testing; or

• have a positive COVID-19 test and live more than 2 hours from a hospital.

To find out more about eligiblity, visit our Guide to Medical Transportation Benefits for Self-isolation.

Medical Transportation Benefit Coverage

Medical transportation may be provided for clients to access medically necessary health services not available in their community of residence. Medically necessary health services may include:

 ​Medical services insured through the BC Medical Services Plan (MSP);

​ Publicly-funded diagnostic tests and preventive screening programs;

 Services covered by First Nations Health Benefits (e.g., dental, vision, etc.);

 Traditional healers; and

 Treatment at the nearest appropriate facility in BC funded by or referred to by the National Native Alcohol and Drug Abuse Program (NNADAP).

The MT benefit covers the most economical and efficient means of transportation, taking into account the urgency of the situation and the medical condition being addressed.

Items and services not listed as a benefit may be covered on an exceptional basis. Clients should call Health Benefits at 1-855-550-5454 to learn more about exceptional coverage.


Clients requesting MT coverage must provide the following documentation before travel can be arranged:

 A referral from a general practitioner or family doctor; and

 Confirmation of an upcoming appointment from the health provider or facility.

For eligible, pre-approved MT trips, clients must provide confirmation of attendance (COA) from the health provider or facility after their appointment. Travel expenses will not be reimbursed without a written COA.

Client Responsibilities

Clients who receive MT benefits from Health Benefits have certain responsibilities, including:

​ When possible, clients should give at least five days' notice to allow time for travel arrangements to be made. Without enough notice, clients may have to re-schedule their appointment, or pay for their travel out-of-pocket and request reimbursement later.

 Clients should get prior approval from Health Benefits or the responsible First Nations community or organization for all non-emergency trips.

 Clients should attend their medical appointment as scheduled. Clients who do not attend medical appointments may be required to pay back any benefits they have received, and pay for their travel costs on subsequent medical travel.

 Clients should get a signed or stamped COA from the health professional or facility where they had their appointment, and provide it to Health Benefits or the appropriate First Nations community or organization.

 Clients should protect all original warrants or vouchers given to them for their medical trip because they will not be replaced if they are lost or stolen.

 Clients should give as much notice as possible when cancelling an appointment, and at least 24 hours' notice when cancelling hotel or flight arrangements.

 Clients need to keep all their original receipts from their travel so they can submit them for reimbursement.

 Threatening or abusive language or behaviour used towards patient travel clerks or health providers will not be tolerated, and may result in clients being asked to pay for their travel out-of-pocket and request reimbursement later.


Clients may be eligible to travel with an escort under certain conditions, such as when the client:

 Is a minor;

 Requires assistance with activities of daily living such as dressing, eating, or bathing;

 Is undergoing a medical procedure (e.g., day surgery) or has a medical condition that will result in the client requiring assistance;

 Will receive instructions on specific and essential home medical or nursing procedures that cannot be given to the client only;

 Faces a language barrier; and

 Is travelling to give birth, including travel to be near medical care while awaiting childbirth (prenatal confinement).

Clients must provide documentation from their health care provider to support their need for an escort.

Medical Transportation Exclusions

Some types of travel are Exclusions and are not eligible for coverage under the MT benefit. Clients cannot seek exception or appeal for excluded travel. MT benefit Exclusions include, but are not limited to:

 Accessing medical appointments when already outside of Canada;

 Compassionate travel (e.g., travelling to visit a family member receiving medical treatment);

 Payment of fees for a doctor's note that supports a client request for MT benefits;

 Travel back to a client's community of residence if the client becomes ill while away from home;

 Travel by clients in the care of a federal, provincial, or territorial institution (e.g., clients who are in prison);

 Travel by clients when necessary medical services are available in their current area of residence;

 Travel to access medical appointments located outside of Canada;

 Travel to access non-medically necessary services;

 Travel to access services requested by a third party (e.g., medical exams required for a job or for insurance purposes);

 Travel to access treatment or an assessment that is court-ordered or a condition of parole;

 Travel to adult day care or respite care;

 Travel to interval or safe houses; and

​ Travel where the only purpose is to pick up prescriptions, vision care products, or medical supplies and equipment that don't need to be fitted.

Client Forms

Clients whose medical transportation benefits are processed by Health Benefits should use the forms provided in the links below. Clients who live in community should contact their local community health centre for the appropriate forms.


Medical Transportation Check List

Medical Transportation Request Form

Medical Transportation Confirmation of Appointment Form

Medical Transportation Physician Escort Form

Medical Transportation Confirmation of Attendance Form


When coverage for a service has been denied, clients have the right to appeal the decision. Items and services that are Exclusions cannot be appealed. See the Appeals page​ for more information about the appeals process.

Fact Sheet​

For information on how to access medical transportation benefits check out the Medical Transportation Benefit Fact Sheet.

 Do you have questions?

Contact us at 

or call

1-855-550-5454 (Toll Free)​

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This client satisfaction survey will help us understand BC First Nations experiences accessing FNHA Health Benefits. We will use this information to improve the quality of our services.

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