Canadian Health Coalition

Cuts to Refugee Health Care

“In late April 2012, the federal government announced a series of sweeping changes to the Interim Federal Health (IFH) program, the health insurance program for refugees in Canada. The changes came into effect on June 30, 2012. On June 29th the federal government announced after significant public pressure that government assisted refugees would not be impacted by these cuts.”
Canadian Doctors for Refugee Care

Call for action

We invite you to add your voice to support the campaign to reinstate health care services for refugees. Click here to take action.


  • In March 2015, the Canadian Health Coalition along with the Charter Committee on Poverty Issues have filed a motion to intervene at the Federal Court of Appeal. You can read this request here.
  • Backgrounder by the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers


CBC News (January 28, 2015)
Refugee health care fight cost feds $1.4 million in legal fees

CBC News (January 21, 2015)
Refugee health-care advocates criticize government inaction

Torontoist (November 19, 2014)
Health Coalition Says Refugee Claimants Need Access to Social Assistance

Toronto Star (November 14, 2014)
Ottawa restores temporary access to basic health care for all refugees

Globe and Mail (August 17, 2014)
Refugee claimants struggling to find health care after cuts

Rabble (June 21, 2014)
Cuts to refugee health care endanger patients’ lives

Toronto Star (June 15, 2014)
Standing up for refugee health in Canada

CBC News (June 4, 2014)
Federal government to appeal ruling reversing ‘cruel’ cuts to refugee health. Federal Court earlier gave Ottawa 4 months to make changes.

Press review May – July 2012

Press Release:

Harper’s Cuts to Refugee Health Care: A violation of medical ethics and a disgrace to Canada (May 7, 2012)