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Questions and Answers

What is MSP?


Author: Canadian Mental Health Association, BC Division



MSP stands for Medical Services Plan. It’s a health insurance program managed by the government for people who live in British Columbia, Canada. MSP pays for things like doctor’s appointments, appointments with specialist doctors like psychiatrists, and hospital stays you need to treat a medical problem.

Everyone who lives in BC must enroll in MSP. You pay a monthly fee based on your income. Some workplaces cover the costs of MSP fees for you.

Learn more about MSP here. If you have questions about applying for or managing your MSP coverage, call Health Insurance BC at 604 683-7151 in the Lower Mainland or 1-800-663-7100 in the rest of BC. They are open Monday – Friday from 8.00am – 4.30pm. You can also get help in person at your local Service BC office.

If you are new to BC, you have to wait three months before registering for MSP.

Bring your Care Card or BC Services Card with you when you go to medical appointments or use the pharmacy.


About the author

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The Canadian Mental Health Association promotes the mental health of all and supports the resilience and recovery of people experiencing a mental illness through public education, community-based research, advocacy, and direct services. Visit


Q&A is for readers who want to take charge of their well-being, support a friend or loved one, find good help, or just learn more about mental health and substance use. Here, the information and resource experts at HeretoHelp will answer the questions that we’re asked most often. We'll offer tips and information, and we'll connect you with help in BC, Canada. If you have a question you’d like to ask, email us at [email protected], tweet @heretohelpbc, or log in to HeretoHelp and post a comment on this page.


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