A premature baby: A Big Bill - Canadian Centre for Refugee and Immigrant Healthcare
Zohra and Farid arrived as permanent residents to Canada, from Asia. From application stages to entry, the process had taken 4 years. When Diana’s papers came through, she was 4 months pregnant. If Diana delayed her immigration until her infant was born, their permanent resident status for Canada would be invalid and they would have to re-apply. They decided – as most in her circumstance do – to come to Canada, hope the uninsured period did not create problems, and hope the 3 month wait for OHIP would pass without incident. Unfortunately that was not to be. She needed an emergency C section for fetal distress a few weeks before her OHIP was valid. Their baby girl – born a Canadian citizen — was premature but fine. Diana however, needed treatment for hemorrhaging after surgery. She received a bill for over $10,000. It was a bill they were unable to pay. Finally, after being chased by a collection agency, with no credit, they were left with no choice other than to give up on their Canadian journey, and return home.