SABVC’s Health & Dental Plan – Did You Know?

Gareth Jones, sabvc.ca

Did you know?

SABVC provides all of its members with a supplementary health and dental plan. In one billing year, this includes a plethora of benefits, such as 80 per cent of the cost of prescription drugs, $300 towards a psychologist and social worker, $250 towards the cost of an ambulance, and $100 towards a pair of glasses. For a detailed breakdown, visit here.

It’s important to note that this works in conjunction with one’s already existing health care plan.

In order to gain access to their benefits, one must first create a My Benefits card, which can be done here. It can be used at the chiropractor, physiotherapist, optometrist, et cetera. It may be processed differently person to person depending on how the institution conducts their billing.

If one is a member of SABVC, one is automatically eligible to receive a My Benefits card, with a few exceptions. One must be a full-time student, a Canadian resident, and under 70. A number of programs are ineligible for this service, such as ELL, Academic Upgrading, Work Experience, Health Care Aide, Recreational Aide and open studies. Part-time students are also ineligible for the plan. The Health and Dental plan also will not cover dietary supplements, contraceptives, immunizations or experimental drugs.

In order to allow SABVC to best serve the student population, one may opt for the Student Benefits FLEX plan, which gives students the option to specialize their benefits plan to suit their needs. By default, students will be a part of the Balanced Plan. FLEXible Drug and Parameds grants more towards psychologist and paramedic visits, FLEXible Vision grants more towards glasses and psychologist visits, and FLEXible Dental provides more coverage for dental work and oral surgery. Once per year, on the anniversary of their enrolment period, one may also choose to select a different FLEX plan.

Eligible students are also able to register their spouses and dependents under the health and dental plan. To do this, one must complete the online application, as well as pay the family coverage fee at SABVC’s Student Benefits Plan Office, located in room S2034. It is important to note that one’s family can only be covered while one is a student, and if one opts for the FLEX plan, all family members will receive the same coverage.

Some may not see the importance of this plan, and others will already be receiving a similar plan from their place of employment. Whatever the reason, the fact remains that some students simply will not want the assistance of a health and dental plan. These students are able to opt-out of the health and dental plan, either online or by visiting the Student Benefits Plan Office.

So, why is it important to SABVC to provide a health and dental plan? In the modern day, health and dental fees are at an all-time high, and signs indicate that they will continue to climb. Financial worries, especially regarding a sudden and unexpected medical emergency, can be daunting, especially for students on a fixed income. SABVC’s health and dental plan aims to ease or eliminate these costs, and the stress that comes with them. A reasonable, cost-effective plan has been determined to be the most effective. A mandatory fee for all members ensures that insurance risk is spread evenly across the student population, lowering the cost for student. An individual health and dental plan can cost as much as five times the current fee.

The low fee and universal Balanced Plan provided for all members allows SABVC to play an active role in ensuring the physical and mental health of Bow Valley College students.