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NWT Health Care Plan: Summary of Benefits

The Northwest Territories provides government health care called the NWT Health Care Plan. It is available to all NWT residents, and the following is a summary of coverage and benefits.

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Physician Services

The following physician services are insured by NWT Health:

  • Diagnosis and treatment of illness/injury as well as surgery and anesthetics when needed.
  • Surgery when medically necessary.
  • Obstetrical care (includes pre-natal and post-natal care).
  • Eye examinations, treatment and procedures provided by an ophthalmologist.
  • Some dental services ONLY if related to jaw injury or disease.

The following physician services are not insured:

  • General examinations (e.g. physical exams) and examinations requested by third parties.
  • All cosmetic procedures.
  • Prescription drugs.
  • Experimental procedures.
  • Optometrists.
  • Routine dental services (e.g. cleanings, exams, extractions, fillings, etc.).
  • Paramedical services such as chiropractors, massage therapists, naturopaths, podiatrists, acupuncturists and osteopaths.

Hospital Services

The following services provided by a hospital in the Northwest Territories are covered (in-patient or out-patient basis):

  • Accommodation and meals (standard ward only).
  • Nursing services within the hospital.
  • Diagnostic services, i.e. x-rays, laboratory work and interpretive services.
  • Prescription drugs that are administered in a hospital and have been prescribed by a doctor.
  • Radiotherapy treatment, occupational therapy and physiotherapy.
  • Detoxification services provided by any government approved healthcare facility.
  • Use of operating room, anesthetics and medical equipment.

Hospital services that are not covered include:

  • Semi-private and private rooms (standard ward coverage is applied).
  • Ambulance charges with the exception of inter-hospital transfers.
  • All cosmetic surgeries and associated charges.
  • Dental services unless related to jaw injury and/or disease.
  • Alcohol and drug rehabilitation unless prior approval is granted.
  • Experimental services.

Metis Health Benefits

The Northwest Territories offers supplementary health benefits for indigenous Metis residents (to be eligible for these benefits you must first successfully apply for the Métis Health Benefits program).

This program includes coverage for:

  • Dental services (100% coverage for eligible expenses which includes routine checkups, cleanings, scalings, orthodontics, etc.).
  • Vision care: eyeglasses, lenses and more. Every 2 years for eligible residents aged 18 and up, and every 12 months for residents younger than 18 years old.
  • Reasonable and customary charges for durable medical equipment and supplies (limitations apply as per Alberta Blue Cross). Examples are diabetic supplies, wheelchairs, walkers, orthotic and custom footwear, and oxygen supplies.
  • Prescription drugs (100% coverage for eligible expenses).
  • Medical travel costs incurred as a result of traveling to receive treatment that is not available in your community.

Extended Health Benefits

NWT Health also offers extended health benefits to non-aboriginal and Metis residents for specific diseases. Coverage is for prescription drugs and medical supplies/equipment.

For more information click here.

- for full details please visit the Northwest Territories government website -

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Last updated March 2018