“She is covered – Today”.

That was the reply from Blue Cross when we called last week to see if we could arrange medically necessary pregnancy care investigations for Anna. She is a refugee claimant dating before Mr Kenney’s Orders in Council. She still carried, and showed us what she thought were still “valid” IFH papers. Anna is delivering a baby soon. The word “Today” caught our nurse’s attention. It is the first time we have heard it used when we call to find out who is covered for what under new IFH classifications. This was a first, and all very new to us.

None of us had the heart to tell Anna her papers, with Canada stamped proudly across them, were no longer worth the paper they were written on. Any day now, she was going to be “re-classified”, just like so many others refugee claimants we treat.

Our nurse asked what “Today” meant? It meant we must call again, tomorrow, to check if her eligibility to IFH has been reduced, cut, if she has been “reclassified”. And it means call again in 2 days when Anna’s tests are scheduled. It means we must call Blue Cross daily to see if her IFH coverage status has been cut. The reason, according to Blue Cross is because Citizenship and Immigration Canada is reclassifying the IFH status of many refugee claimants who are waiting their refugee hearings. CIC is moving through a long list, and Anna’s number could be up at anytime. We have no idea who is being reclassified, why, or on what criteria? Neither the patient nor their doctor are privy to what information is being obtained and how it used to reclassify?

If our government can do this, behind closed doors to refugee claimants such as Anna – what can they do to any one of use, whenever they choose?

It would now seem when Canada makes a promise, it isn’t worth the paper its written on.


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