Guide 5568 - Application for Interim Federal Health Program Coverage (IFHP)

Table of Contents

This is not a legal document.

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Application package

This application package has:

  • an instruction guide, and
  • the forms you need to fill out.

The instruction guide:

  • has information you must know before you submit your application and
  • explains how to fill out the forms and gather your supporting documents.

Read the instruction guide completely and then fill out each of the applicable forms.

The forms are designed with questions that will help the processing of your application.

Symbols used in this guide

This guide uses these symbols to draw your attention to important information:

Required step

What you must do to have your application processed.

Important information

Important information that you need to know to avoid delays or other problems.

Get more information

Where to get more information.


Tips that will help you with this application.

The application process

The instructions provided in this guide follow the basic steps you will need to know to complete your application.

  1. Gather documents
  2. Complete the application
  3. Submit the application

Before You Apply

Application for Interim Federal Health Program Coverage

The Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP)

The Application for IFHP Coverage (IMM 5564) is for persons who are eligible for the IFHP and who want to:

  • apply for new coverage, or
  • extend their existing IFHP coverage, or
  • request confirmation of IFHP coverage if their original IFHP eligibility document has been lost, stolen or destroyed.

Read the following instructions carefully. Forms that are incomplete or illegible, or that are not accompanied by the required documents may take longer to process or be returned.

Important information

Applications for IFHP coverage should only be submitted if you are eligible under the program. If you are applying to extend your coverage, make sure to apply six (6) weeks before your current eligibility period expires.

Important Information about IFHP Eligibility Documents

The IFHP eligibility document which could be either the Refugee Protection Claimant Document (RPCD) or the Interim Federal Health Certificate of Eligibility (IFHP Certificate), is an important document that identifies you to registered IFHP health-care providers as someone who is eligible for IFHP coverage.

When you receive your document:

  • Read it carefully and sign it in the area entitled “Signature of Holder”.
  • Do not lend or give your IFHP document to anyone.

You must present your IFHP eligibility document to a registered IFHP provider so that they can confirm your coverage with the IFHP Claims Administrator, Medavie Blue Cross, each time you need a service or product.

Your eligibility document will not be accepted by registered IFHP providers without your signature.

IFHP Coverage

Coverage through the IFHP includes:

Basic Coverage (similar to health-care coverage provided by provincial or territorial health insurance plans):

  • in-patient and out-patient hospital services;
  • services provided by medical doctors, registered nurses and other health-care professionals licensed in Canada, including pre- and post-natal care;
  • laboratory, diagnostic and ambulance services.

Supplemental Coverage (similar to supplemental coverage provided to social assistance recipients by provincial and territorial governments):

  • limited dental and vision care;
  • home care and long-term care;
  • services provided by allied health-care practitioners including clinical psychologists, occupational therapists, speech language therapists, physiotherapists;
  • assistive devices, medical supplies and equipment, including:
    • orthopedic and prosthetic equipment;
    • mobility aids;
    • hearing aids;
    • diabetic supplies;
    • incontinence supplies;
    • oxygen equipment.

Prescription Drug Coverage

  • Most prescription medications and other products listed on provincial or territorial public drug plan formularies.

Coverage for the Immigration Medical Exam (IME)

For most categories of beneficiaries, the IFHP also covers the cost of one IME and IME-related diagnostic tests required under the Immigration Refugee Protection Act.

The benefits covered by the IFHP are subject to certain limits and prescribed maximum dollar amounts. For more details, visit Health Care - Refugees.

Who is eligible?

The IFHP provides full coverage to all eligible beneficiaries, including basic, supplemental and prescription drug coverage. For the following groups of benefeciaries, the IFHP also covers the cost of one Immigration Medical Exam (IME):

  • refugee claimants awaiting decision;
  • ineligible refugee claimants;
  • victims of human trafficking, and
  • detainees.

To be eligible, you must qualify under one of the groups listed in the chart below and must not be a Canadian citizen.

If you have private insurance, such as employer-sponsored supplemental health benefits, you may still be eligible for IFHP coverage. However, you are only eligible for coverage for those IFHP services or products that are not covered under your private insurance plan.

Eligible groups Duration of coverage

Resettled refugees:

  • Government-Assisted Refugees (GARs)
  • Blended Visa Office-Referred Refugees (BVORs)
  • Joint Assistance Sponsorship Program Refugees
  • Certain refugees sponsored by organizations with whom CIC has entered into cost-sharing agreements
  • Certain people who are being resettled in Canada as a result of a public policy or humanitarian and compassionate considerations on the Minister’s own initiative
  • Privately Sponsored Refugees (PSRs)

Basic Coverage is provided only until the beneficiary qualifies for provincial or territorial health insurance.

Supplemental and Prescription drug coverage is provided as long as the beneficiary receives income support from the Resettlement Assistance Program (RAP) or its equivalent in Quebec or until the beneficiary is no longer under private sponsorship.

Protected Persons in Canada:

  • Individuals who receive a positive decision on their asylum claim
  • Individuals who receive a positive decision on their PRRA and become a protected person
Basic, supplemental and prescription drug coverage is provided for 90 days from the date the asylum claim or PRRA is accepted, or until they become eligible for provincial or territorial health insurance.

Refugee Claimants awaiting decision:

  • Individuals whose asylum claim is awaiting decision from the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB), including any appeals of a negative decision on their claim

Rejected Refugee Claimants:

  • individuals whose asylum claim is rejected by the IRB and the negative decision was not appealed, or whose right to judicial review or any appeal of that judicial review has been exhausted

Ineligible Refugee Claimants:

  • individuals whose claim for refugee protection is determined ineligible to be referred to the IRB and who are eligible to apply for  a pre-removal risk assessment (PRRA)

Positive PRRA decision:

  • individuals who receive a positive decision on their PRRA and receive a stay of removal

Basic, supplemental and prescription drug coverage continues until the beneficiary leaves Canada or becomes eligible for provincial or territorial health insurance.

IFHP coverage will be cancelled immediately when an individual’s asylum claim is withdrawn, determined to be abandoned by the IRB, or is re-determined as ineligible and is not eligible to apply for a PRRA.

Victims of human trafficking:

  • who have a valid temporary resident permit (under section 24(3) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act)
Basic, supplemtal and prescription drug coverage for the duration of the temporary resident permit.

Detainees under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA)

Basic, supplemental and prescription drug coverage during the period that the individual is detained by the Canada Border Service Agency (CBSA) under the IRPA.

Your coverage can be cancelled in CIC’s system without notice if your immigration status changes.

Important information

In some provinces or territories (PT), refugee claimants can apply for PT health insurance as soon as they receive a positive decision on their refugee claim. If you are required to wait longer than 90 days, you may need to apply for an extension of your IFHP coverage. See section below entitled: When to apply?

For more information

More details about the program can be found in the Interim Federal Health Program Policy.

When to apply?

CIC processes applications for IFHP eligibility as quickly as possible. See Appendix A for CIC centre locations.

If you meet the IFHP eligibility requirements and this is the first time you have applied for coverage:

  • You should submit an application indicating this is a request for first time coverage.

If your current IFHP coverage will be expiring and your situation requires that you continue to be covered:

For example:

  • You are a protected person and are still waiting to be eligible to apply for PT health coverage.

You should submit an application for an extension no later than six weeks before the expiry date of your most recent coverage.

If your IFHP eligibility document was lost, stolen or destroyed:

You should submit an application for confirmation of coverage. Once the application is processed, a new IFHC will be sent to you.

Step 1. Gather Documents

What documents are required?

Collect the documents you need to support your application. Your application must include:

  • Application for IFHP Coverage (IMM 5564);
  • A clear and legible photocopy of the most recent of the following documents that CIC issued to you or to the child under 14 years of age you are applying for:
    • Refugee Protection Claimant Document (RPCD)
    • Interim Federal Health Certificate (IFHC)
    • Temporary Resident Permit (TRP)
    • Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR)
    • Single Journey Travel Document
    • Permanent Resident Card
    • Any other document issued to you and your dependants, if applicable, by Canadian immigration authorities.

Step 2. Complete the Application

Filling out the application

Follow the step-by-step instructions below to complete the application form.

The following is the form that must be filled out and submitted for all applicants:

  • Application for IFHP Coverage (IMM 5564)

Important information

Be complete and accurate

Complete all sections. Answer truthfully and to the best of your knowledge. Be sure to sign your application form and attach the required supporting documents. Your application may be returned if any information or documents are missing.

Application for IFHP Coverage (IMM 5564)

Section A - Personal Details

In this section, provide your personal information, such as family name, date of birth, address, etc.

Note: You can find your client identification number (Client ID) on your immigration document, issued by the CIC office, the Case Processing Centre, or the visa office where you filed your claim. Your client identification number consists of four numbers, a hyphen (-) and four more numbers. (Example: 0000-0000).

Section B – Information for Document Replacement

Complete Section B only if your IFHP eligibility document was lost, stolen or destroyed and you are applying to request a confirmation of existing IFHP coverage.

Section C – Your Status in Canada

In this section, you should describe your immigration status in Canada. Your answers in this section will be used to determine your IFHP eligibility. Answer truthfully and to the best of your knowledge.

Section D – Other Information

In this section, you should indicate if you are eligible for, have applied for, or have received other health-care insurance. Your answers in this section will be used to determine your IFHP eligibility. Answer truthfully and to the best of your knowledge.

Section E – Declaration of Applicant

Read the declaration. Then sign and date in the boxes provided.


Be sure to attach the supporting documentation listed in the instructions accompanying this form.

Step 3. Submit the Application

To submit an online application:

  • Create a MyCIC account;
  • Under the heading “What would you like to do today” select “Apply for the Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP)”.

Note:  You will receive a response to your application by e-mail, through your MyCIC account.

To submit an application by mail:

  • Put the completed form(s) and supporting document(s) in an envelope;
  • Be sure to use sufficient postage;
  • Send your completed application to the nearest CIC centre listed in Appendix A (at the end of this guide).
Affix sufficient postage (top right of the envelope)
Sender (top left of the envelope)
(Your name)
(Your Address)
(Your Postal Code)
Citizenship and Immigration Centre
(Refer to the addresses shown in Appendix A for the closest office).


Sign the form

The application must be signed and dated before it is submitted. If your application is not signed and dated, it will be returned to you.

What Happens Next

The application process


Once you have submitted your application to a CIC Centre, either online or by mail, it will be evaluated to determine that it has been properly completed and submitted and that all requested supporting documentation has been provided.

The CIC centre may contact you if you need to provide:

  • more information,
  • additional documents, or
  • if you need to appear for an interview.


If you are applying: 

  • for the first time; or
  • to extend your IFHP coverage and you meet the requirements; or
  • to request confirmation of an existing IFHP coverage,

CIC will issue a new Interim Federal Health Certificate of Eligibility to you.

If your application for IFHP coverage is denied, CIC will inform you in writing.

Factors that facilitate processing

There are certain things you can do to help ensure that your application is processed as promptly as possible by the office:

  • make sure that all the documentation and information requested is provided at the time your application is made.
  • make sure that you notify the CIC Centre promptly of any and all changes to your mailing address, family situation, or any other information that is important to your application.

Change of address

If you change your address after you submit your application, notify us immediately by e-mail, using the CIC on-line service, follow the instructions on how to complete and send the electronic change of address form.

Protecting your information

When you signed your original document that provided you with IFHP coverage or when you sign a new document issued as a result of this application, you agree that your:

  • medical and personal information will be shared with CIC, IFHP claims administration and other appropriate third-parties for the administration of the Interim Federal Health Program,  and
  • that your personal information may be shared with other government institutions and other third-parties in accordance with the Privacy Act.

For more information.You can obtain additional information on the protection of your data by visiting the Help Centre.

Online services

For more information on the programs offered by Citizenship and Immigration Canada, visit Immigration and Citizenship.

Need help?

If you need help, you can find answers to your questions by consulting the Help Centre.

Appendix A - List of Citizenship and Immigration Centres


495 Prospect Street
Fredericton, NB  E3B 9M4

1741 Brunswick Street, Suite B110
Halifax, NS  B3J 3X8

St. John’s
21 Hallett Crescent
St. John’s, NL  A1B 4G2


1010 St-Antoine Street West, 2nd floor
Montréal, QC  H3C 1B2


5343 Dundas Street West, Suite 105
Etobicoke, ON M9B 6K5

Western Region

269 Main Street, Suite 400 New
Winnipeg, MB
R3C 1B2

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