Travel Health Benefits

Coverage while travelling outside of Canada during COVID-19 pandemic

A medical emergency resulting from COVID-19 will be treated the same way as any other medical emergency outside Canada. If you are travelling and need immediate assistance with a medical emergency, please call Allianz Global Assistance at the number on the back of your travel benefits card.

  • In the U.S.: 1-800-511-4610
  • From anywhere else: 1-519-514-0351. You can call this number collect through an international operator.

Sun Life won’t cover the cost of COVID-19 tests under travel insurance benefits, as tests are not a treatment for a medical emergency. If you miss a flight because you can’t get a test for COVID-19 before departure, Sun Life won't cover the cost of the missed flight or other related expenses.

If travel home is restricted by a border closure due to COVID-19 or a wait for a COVID-19 test, coverage duration limits continue to apply. Check the Government of Alberta COVID-19 travel advice before deciding to leave Canada.

The Travel Benefit covers you and your eligible dependents for all services and supplies eligible under your Supplementary Health Care Plan, while you're travelling outside the province where you live. Coverage is available for a maximum of 180 days from your date of departure.

Before you leave

  • Pack your Sun Life Financial Travel Card, which shows the telephone numbers for Allianz Global Assistance. To obtain a card either:
    • Download and print the Sun Life Travel Card from the Quick Links on this page. Make sure to fill in your name, contract number 25379 and member ID. The member ID is your University ID number, which can be found on the back of your OneCard.
    • Print a personalized card with your name and ID already included. Access this service through your account at the SunLife Member Services site.
  • Take your provincial health card with you, or know your number.
  • Call Allianz Global Assistance to ensure there are no travel warnings for your destination

What is a medical emergency?

Medical emergency means an acute illness or accidental injury that requires immediate, medically necessary treatment prescribed by a doctor.

In a medical emergency, call Allianz Global Assistance immediately

Call Allianz Global Assistance even before seeking medical attention. The contact numbers are shown on your Travel Card. If you can't call immediately, call as soon as possible. Call collect where available. If you can't call collect let the customer service representative know; they can call you right back. If you have to pay for the call yourself, keep your receipts and submit them to Allianz Global Assistance for reimbursement.

What happens when you call?

  1. When you call Allianz Global Assistance you'll be asked for the following information:
    • Your name, the patient's name (if different) and your current location
    • Your provincial health care number
    • Your University of Alberta contract number (25379) and your member ID number so they can confirm your coverage and benefits
    • Your home address, date of birth, the reason for your trip, your departure and planned return dates and travel method
    • A phone number where you can be contacted and a fax number where you can receive forms - your hotel, hospital or other current numbers
    • A description of the situation (what happened, when, where, etc.)
  2. Allianz Global Assistance will give you a file number - write it down for future reference. You'll need it when you call for updates.
  3. You'll be sent, often by a fax to the provider (e.g. the hospital), a medical release form to sign and return. This authorizes Allianz Global Assistance to gather any information required to monitor your care. If there is no fax number available, the medical release could be sent by e-mail or regular mail.
  4. If you need a referral to an appropriate provider (e.g. hospital, doctor, pharmacy), Allianz Global Assistance will make arrangements for you and call you back with details, usually within the hour. They will explain where you are to go and the time of your appointment. When you arrive, the provider will be expecting you. They will know what procedures are pre-approved and the billing arrangements.

Allianz Global Assistance services

  • Allianz Global Assistance medical staff must pre-approve all invasive and investigative procedures (e.g. MRIs, CT scans) prior to being performed to determine whether they are emergency services (note that your benefits cover only emergency services). You and the provider will be called with any pre-approvals, usually within two hours of your initial call.
  • Whenever possible, Allianz Global Assistance arranges medical expense payments to a provider. You shouldn't receive an invoice from a provider, but if you do, don't pay it; just send it to Allianz Global Assistance.
  • Your medical condition and your treatment and care are monitored throughout the emergency. Allianz Global Assistance stays in contact with your provider and will follow up with you regularly to ensure you're receiving the care you need.
  • Sometimes based on the medical information and treatment plan provided, Allianz Global Assistance medical staff determines you should be transported home or to a different medical facility to ensure appropriate treatment. All transportation arrangements will be made by Allianz Global Assistance and explained to you.
  • Since Allianz Global Assistance coordinates payment of your expenses with your provincial health care plan, you must complete an Authorization and Release form so they can submit your claim. The form will usually be sent to your home address and will be there when you return home.

Medi-Passport services for Academic Staff:

  • Hotel accommodation and meals, if your return trip is delayed by a medical emergency involving a covered dependent travelling with you.
  • Replacement transportation tickets if you lose the use of your return ticket due to a medical emergency.
  • Return home of unattended dependent children if you are hospitalized.
  • Visit of a family member if you are hospitalized for more than seven consecutive days.
  • Return of your remains to your home province in the event of your death.
  • Return of your personal or rented car.
  • Help with arrangements for replacing lost or stolen travel documents and luggage.
  • Translation services to help you communicate with the local medical personnel
  • Sending of urgent messages to your home or business

What do you need to do?

  • Stay in contact with Allianz Global Assistance according to their instructions until they tell you it's no longer necessary.
  • Return the Authorization and Release form to Allianz Global Assistance so that they can submit a claim to your provincial health care plan on your behalf.
  • If you incur eligible out-of-pocket expenses, such as prescription drugs, you can send your receipts directly to Allianz Global Assistance for reimbursement.

What if you wait until after the medical emergency to contact Allianz Global?

Your plan requires you to contact Allianz Global Assistance immediately at the time of the medical emergency. If emergency services are provided when contact could reasonably have been made, then payments could be limited or denied for all expenses related to the emergency. If you wait to contact Allianz Global Assistance, you'll have to pay all expenses yourself. You may also risk incurring expenses not covered under your plan, which could prove costly. The claims submission and adjudication process is also more time-consuming. Plus you'll miss having the help and support Allianz Global Assistance can give you in an emergency.

To submit a claim for reimbursement:

  • collect original and itemized receipts showing the services provided and the dates, the diagnosis and the names and addresses of the providers (e.g. hospital, doctor)
  • get your medical records from your providers
  • complete an Allianz Global Assistance Emergency Medical Expense Claim Form and submit the claim when you return home

Once Allianz Global Assistance has received your claim, they will send you the Authorization and Release form allowing them to submit your claim to your provincial health plan on your behalf. You cannot be reimbursed until the form is returned.

If you have any questions about your emergency medical coverage or want information about your group benefits coverage, please do not hesitate to contact us.