Health care for reservists

What regulations and instructions determine my entitlements to health care as a Reservist?

Two documents govern your entitlements to health care:

The Surgeon General’s directive is available only on the Defence Team Intranet.

What factors determine my entitlements to health care?

Two factors determine your entitlements to physical and mental health care:

The following descriptions of Reserve service class entitlements are guides. Always check with your orderly room or CAF health services staff about your entitlements. Learn more by consulting our Military Benefits Browser.

Are there any health care entitlements that apply to all Reservists, regardless of class?

Regardless of your class, the CAF will evaluate and meet your immediate health care needsFootnote 1 .

In addition, Canadian Forces Health Services will cover the provision of Spectrum of Care benefits to all Reservists for a service-related injury or illness above and beyond provincial health care coverage until your releaseFootnote 2 .

I am a Class A or a Class B Reservist who serves for less than 180 days per year. How does this determine my entitlements to health care beyond immediate needs?

Beyond the evaluation and meeting of your immediate health needs, the CAF will provide future care for a service-related injury or illness.

In this situation, care is limited to that injury or illness. The CAF will provide care until you can be transferred safely to a civilian health care provider.

For chronic medical conditions, injuries, or illnesses unrelated to your reserve service, you must consult a civilian care provider.

I am a Class C or a Class B Reservist who serves for more than 180 days per year. How does this determine my entitlements to health care beyond immediate needs?

Beyond the evaluation and meeting of your immediate health needs, the CAF will provide future care for any injury or illness regardless of whether or not it is service-related. This is the same level of care to which Regular Force members are entitled.

If you complete a period of full-time Reserve Service during which you receive care from a CAF clinic, you will continue to receive that care after you become a Class “A” reservist. This will continue until you can be transferred safely to a civilian health care providerFootnote 3 .

For chronic medical conditions, injuries, or illnesses unrelated to your reserve service, the Canadian Forces Health Services Group will offer care to you. However, you may get care from your civilian health care provider if you prefer.

Where can I get CAF health care?

You can get health care from CAF Health Care Services located in various geographic locations across Canada.

CAF health care includes:

What about Emergencies and Follow-Up Care?

No matter what your service class is, you can get urgent care at any CAF Health Services primary care or mental health clinic.

Future care depends on whether your injury or illness is related to service as well as your service class.

Like any other Canadian, you can also get emergency health care through your local hospital or civilian care provider.

If I must travel to get health care, am I entitled to any compensation?

As a Reservist, you are supported by a CAF base or wing. However, you may not be near their health care services. If you must travel to get care for a service-related injury or illness, you will be compensated regardless of your service class.

Specific entitlements and the authorization process will depend on whether you are travelling inside or outside the geographical boundaries of your support base or wingFootnote 4 .

How can I get authorization if I have to travel within the geographical boundaries of my base or wing to get health care?

Let’s say you live on the outskirts of a city. You must travel downtown to see a CAF medical officer.

As a result:

  • You are considered as on-duty.
  • Your base or wing commander has compensation authority.
  • Your transportation is authorized according to your base or wing or local orders. You can get specific direction on this from administrative staff.
  • You must get travel authorization before leaving in order to ensure reimbursement.

How can I get authorization if I have to travel outside the geographical boundaries of my base or wing to get health care?

Let’s say you live in a remote area. You must travel outside your geographical boundaries to get to a medical appointment.

As a result:

  • You are considered as being on temporary duty statusFootnote 5 .
  • Your Director Health Services has compensation authorityFootnote 6 .
  • You will be compensated in a fair and reasonable manner according to the Canadian Forces Temporary Duty Instruction.
  • Your compensated expenses are limited to meals, lodgings, transportation expenses, and incidentals.
  • You must get travel authorization before leaving in order to ensure reimbursement.

As a Reservist, am I entitled to any social services?

In addition to health care, you are also entitled to non-medical social services intended to help you deal with your injury or illness. Your eligibility depends on your service class as well as whether your illness or injury is service-related.

And am I entitled to any other benefits?

Contact Veterans Affairs Canada for more information about other benefits and services for which you may be entitled.

Report a problem or mistake on this page
Please select all that apply:

Thank you for your help!

You will not receive a reply. For enquiries, contact us.

Date modified: