UPDATE AUGUST 23:  A report coming from a caregiver online suggests that this procedure may not be as easy as initially thought.  Apparently a caregiver with implied status has to wait till their OHIP expires, apply to renew, wait for the rejection and then file an appeal.  More hoops to go through in order to take advantage of health care they are entitled to as a temporary foreign workers.

Yesterday, Toronto immigration lawyer Rafael Fabregas tipped us off, via his Twitter @rafael_fabregas, that not only can foreign caregivers in Toronto maintain OHIP while on implied status when their work permit has expired, but it is not exactly new, just not commonly known.

For the last few years, and especially since the ballooning of caregiver Permanent Residence processing times, we have met no less than one caregiver per day at our office who has no OHIP coverage due to being denied renewal as their permit is expired.  However, these caregivers have implied status with their last employer on record and are just caught in the waiting period for the open permits.

One such caregiver we’ve been in contact with has been without OHIP for over a year and this can be a nightmare if one were to get ill or even if they need to get a simple prescription.  It has been a mystery to us why CIC would allow caregivers to enter Canada for a 4 year period but not make concessions for them during processing times that they, themselves, control.

In a consultation with a new applicant yesterday, a caregiver confessed that she did not know what she would do without OHIP during the over 4 1/2 month wait for her new work permit with the same employer.  She can legally work here and provide health care to her elder patient, but can’t even go to the doctor herself!

However, the OHIP renewal for implied status caregivers apparently is not done in the traditional way.  Mr. Fabregas notes that caregivers should contact Thorncliffe Neighourhood Office and speak with Maria Leynes at 647-296-6204.  We wonder why so many caregivers have been denied OHIP renewal thus far through the traditional routes and why Health Canada has not brought more attention to the ability to do this.

Rafael Fabregas will be speaking on immigration matters at St. Paschal Babylon Church at 92 Steeles Avenue West, Thornhill on August 27th at 1pm.  We encourage any and all caregivers with questions to attend.

 

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