The official Government of Canada travel advisory (issued March 13, 2020), says to avoid non-essential travel outside of Canada until further notice. What does this mean for my travel coverage if I still choose to travel for non-essential/leisure purposes?
While we continue to view the Government advisory as the primary guideline, we understand that plan members will make their own choices around travelling. In these situations, we firmly believe that providing peace of mind is the right thing to do. For that reason, your travel plan may?include coverage for emergency medical expenses related to COVID-19 for the period of August 15, 2020 through December 31, 2021, up to the existing maximums and limitations within each plan.
This additional coverage will apply to all destinations globally – regardless of the COVID-19 travel advisory being in place or reason for travel (i.e. leisure, work, school) – and is subject to all other terms, conditions, and limitations of your benefits plan, including the day limit, the requirement that you must be symptom free, in good health, and that all pre-existing conditions must be stable for 90 days prior to departure.
If you are unsure if this applies to your plan, you can:
- Contact the GSC Customer Service Centre
- Speak with your plan sponsor – if applicable
Additionally, we encourage you to review Government of Canada travel information for the latest updates, including travel advisories for other reasons, in addition to requirements upon your return to Canada.
If you do travel and COVID-19 symptoms arise, contact GSC Travel Assistance immediately for support. You can find the phone number on the back of your ID card (as well as on your electronic ID on GSC’s mobile app). It is important to remember that travel coverage is for emergency treatment that cannot be delayed until you return to your home province.
When travelling for work, prior to seeking medical treatment outside of Canada, the expectation is that the employer be contacted to initiate a claim with Worker’s Compensation.
Message from the Local Union
More people are getting vaccinated and we are seeing an increase in accessibility to travel with less restrictions. We want to ensure that our active and retired members are following all Federal and Provincial regulations at any given moment. If Federal regulations dictate that you quarantine for 14 days (as they do today) and you leave the country for a specified period of time, be prepared to follow the guidelines upon your return. Stay safe and stay well Brothers and Sisters and all of your families.
Please note that this does not cover additional costs for COVID-19 screening done to leave or return to or from Canada. It also does not cover any additional costs for vaccinations outside of the Province in which you are covered. Find out from your Provincial health coverage before making plans if considering.
Unifor Local 707