No, they are completely different yet most Canadians conflate the two. Health benefits or extended benefits, relate to routine Drug, Dental, Optical and Medical expenses. Think prescription drugs, glasses, dental check-ups and massages. Health insurance refers to risk-based products purchased to protect oneself against unforeseen catastrophic events such as death, disability, illness or emergency hospital and/or travel related expenses. This distinction is important because major insurers bundle extended benefits with insurance into a single premium. This allows them to justify premium increases each year since every claim will raise your plan usage and perceived ‘risk’.
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