Extended health insurance for postsecondary students: Limited support for mental health

The purpose of this study was to survey the extended health insurance plans available to undergraduate students at colleges and universities across Canada, to evaluate the extent of coverage for prescription medication and for psychotherapy and counselling services. Results showed that the majority of institutions offer extended health and that, among these institutions, coverage for medication is usually adequate for problems such as anxiety or depression. However, very few plans provide sufficient coverage for counselling or psychotherapy. Given the high level of mental health concerns among postsecondary students, recommendations are made for improving the support available for students with mental health problems under extended health insurance plans and for the development of campus-wide plans for mental health promotion.

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