Non-Insured Health Benefits – Medical Transportation Services: Escort Criteria

Below are excerpts from the Non-Insured Health Benefits (NIHB) Medical Transportation Policy Framework (Interim). The entirety of the Framework can be found here.

“Indigenous Services Canada’s First Nations and Inuit Health Branch (FNIHB) and the Assembly of First Nations have undertaken a joint review of the Non-Insured Health Benefits (NIHB) program, including the medical transportation benefit. The objectives of this collaborative process are to enhance client access to benefits, identify and address gaps in benefits and improve service delivery to be more responsive to client needs. This updated NIHB Medical Transportation Policy Framework is an interim measure to clarify existing policy in some areas and respond to preliminary issues identified through joint review discussions to date.

Non-Insured Health Benefits (NIHB) Medical Transportation Policy Framework (Interim)

Effective date: July 2019

Non-medical escorts


When coverage for an escort has been authorized, the escort must be capable and willing to provide the assistance that the client needs, for the duration it is required. Depending on the client’s needs, for example, the escort is:

  1. able to sign consent forms or provide a patient history
  2. able to provide the required physical and other required care when the client needs it
    • an escort should not require assistance for their own needs during the trip, as this is important where the client may be admitted to hospital, leaving the escort on their own
  3. proficient in translating between an Indigenous language and English and French
  4. able to drive if the role includes providing ground transportation
  5. able to share personal space to support client”

To avoid delays in processing by WAHA-NIHB Medical Transportation, it is recommended that the escort request be made the time the referral form is filled out by the Health Care Provider.  The Client should be following-up with Ininew Patient Services (IPS) to ensure IPS is in receipt of the escort request.


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