Expecting a new baby can quickly become stressful if you’re a foreigner living abroad. Every country has its own complex healthcare system. As an expat, you might be faced with high medical expenses and confusing choices.
There are close to 390,000 babies born in Canada every year and if you’re about to be one of these lucky new moms, this guide is for you. Read on for average costs for fertility treatments, delivery, and medical expenses related to having a baby in Canada.
The world’s first ‘test tube baby’ was born in 1978. Since then there has been a range of medical advancements, including IVF treatments, to help couples who struggle to conceive. After all, nearly 1 in 8 couples struggle to conceive at some point. But how much do fertility treatments really cost?
Can a non-resident or visitor on a tourist or other visa go through IVF or fertility treatment? Is medical tourism a thing in Canada?
If you’re a non-resident, visitor, or a tourist in Canada, you can visit a private IVF clinic for treatment. However, it’s likely that you’ll pay out-of-pocket prices and not qualify for any financial assistance, unless it’s covered by your international medical insurance plan. In general, due to Canada’s global healthcare, Canada is a centre for medical tourism. However, for specialised elective treatments like IVF, it’s not necessarily cheaper to receive treatment there.
The local currency in Canada is referred to as the Canadian dollar. It’s written as CAD or C$ to distinguish it from other dollar currencies. If you’re looking to compare C$ to your local currency, use an online currency converter.
|IVF fertility treatment in Canada||Average cost (CAD)|
|IVF process (total costs)||C$7,750 - C$25,000|
|In vitro fertilization (IVF) fertility drugs||C$2,500 and C$7,000|
|Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI)||C$200 - C$1500|
|Donor eggs or embryos||Prohibited in Canada|
|Frozen embryo transfer (FET)||C$100 - C$1,500|
|Embryo storage, yearly||C$150 - C$300|
Is there any type of financial assistance or health insurance that will cover part or all of the IVF procedure in Canada?
The public health systems in some of Canada’s territories and provinces offer financial assistance for IVF treatments. For example, Ontario offers one fully funded IVF cycle in a woman’s lifetime and Quebec offers financial assistance for childless couples in the form of tax credits or rebates. There are certain restrictions on who qualifies so you should check the rules in your territory. Some private IVF facilities also offer assistance.
Here are some services where you can learn more about IVF treatments in Canada:
- Government of Canada - Fertility treatment options
- Fertility clinics in Canada
- The Infertility Network
- Ontario Fertility Treatments
- IVF Canada
Canada has public healthcare in the form of a state-funded Medicare system. If you’re a citizen or permanent resident, you can access this healthcare system. With it, the costs of having a baby range from being completely free to costing a couple hundred dollars for private rooms.
Tourists, visitors, and non-residents will have to pay the bills out-of-pocket unless they have international health insurance which will cover the charges. Here is what it might cost to have a baby in Canada without insurance or access to the Canadian Medicare system:
Can a non-resident or visitor on a tourist or other visa deliver a baby in Canada? Is birth tourism a thing in Canada?
If you need to deliver your baby while you’re in Canada as a non-resident, visitor, or tourist you will be able to get medical care that you need. However, the Canadian healthcare system won't cover the costs. You should have international medical insurance if you don’t want to pay the costs out-of-pocket.
Birth tourism is popular in Canada because it’s one of the few developed nations that grants any baby born in Canada the right to become a Canadian citizen, irrespective of the status of their parents’ citizenship or visa status.
|Baby delivery medical procedures in Canada||Average cost with no insurance||Average cost with insurance or Medicare coverage/rebates|
|Prenatal doctor visit and care, per visit||C$100-C$150||C$0|
|Prenatal ultrasound||C$300 - C$500||C$0 - C$300|
|Birth and delivery in the hospital||C$5,000- C$8,000||C$0 - C$1,000|
|Cesarean section in the hospital||C$10,000 - C$12,000||C$0 - C$1,000|
|Home birth and delivery with midwife||C$2,500||C$860-C$2,500|
From prenatal care to resting in the maternity ward after birth, most new moms in Canada will be in the hospital for just a brief time.
The average hospital stay for new moms after a vaginal delivery is 2 - 3 days. If the delivery was via c-section, the stay increases to approximately 4 days.
You’ll want to bring your prenatal medical records and extra comfort items, toiletries, and clothes for mom and the new baby.
When you go to the hospital to have your baby you should bring copies of:
- Your birth plan
- Your medical records if you have them
- Healthcare and/or insurance cards
- Passports and visas (if applicable)
- Social insurance numbers (if applicable)
Each province or territory has its own process for registering your baby’s birth, so you should check with your local authorities for more information. For example in Ontario, the baby should be registered in the first 30 days. When you register online you can simultaneously register for your baby’s birth certificate, social insurance number, and sign up for Canada’s child benefits.
If I am not a Canadian national but have a baby in Canada, will my child have to choose between nationalities or will they get Canadian citizenship?
Any baby born in Canada has the right to become a Canadian citizen, no matter the citizenship or visa status of the parents. After registering your child’s birth and applying for the long-form birth certificate as proof of Canadian citizenship, you can apply for the baby’s Canadian passport by:
- Completing this application form
- Gathering proof of the child’s Canadian citizenship
- Gathering two passport photos
- Gathering proof of parentage or legal guardianship
- Finding a guarantor
- Paying the applicable fees
- Sending all documents to: Government of Canada, Passport Program, Gatineau QC K1A 0G3, Canada
Canadian parents are eligible for maternity and parental benefits if they’ve worked at least 600 hours in the prior year. There’s an 18-month parental leave option which lets them earn up to 33% of their normal weekly earnings, or a 12-month option which gives parents 55% of their normal weekly earnings.
Juggling lives between two nations? Want to save money? TransferWise borderless multi-currency accounts could help.
Expats living in a new country often feel like their lives are split between two places. TransferWise can help you with that. TransferWise makes exchanging money less complicated, by offering the mid-market exchange rate that banks use. No hidden charges or markups involved. Recently, TransferWise added a new borderless multi-currency account, which lets you manage money in dozens of currencies, Canadian dollar included.
TransferWise borderless multi-currency accounts are supported for consumers and businesses living in the following countries
|American Samoa||China||Greenland||Mayotte||Puerto Rico||Turks and Caicos Islands|
|Andorra||Christmas Island||Guernsey||Micronesia||Reunion||United Arab Emirates|
|Anguilla||Cocos (Keeling) Islands||Guyana||Monaco||Romania||United Kingdom|
|Antartica||Cook Islands||Haiti||Mongolia||Saint Helena||United States of America|
|Armenia||Costa Rica||Holy See (Vatican)||Montenegro||Saint Kitts and Nevis||Uruguay|
|Australia||Czech Republic||Iceland||Morocco||Saint Pierre|
|Austria||Denmark||Indonesia||Nauru||Saint Vincent's & Grenadines|
|Barbados||Dominican Republic||Isle of Man||Netherlands||San Marino|
|Belgium||Faroe Islands||Israel and the Occupied Territories||New Caledonia||Sao Tome and Principe|
|British Indian Ocean Territory||French Guiana||Republic of Korea||Palau||Slovakia|
|British Virgin Islands||French Polynesia||Latvia||Paraguay||South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands|
|Brunei Darussalam||French Southern Territories||Liechtenstein||Peru||Spain|
|Cape Verde||Great Britain||Malta||Poland||Taiwan|
This list of countries is constantly expanding, so if you can’t find your country of residence on the table above, contact TransferWise directly or check to make sure it’s not on the list of borderless ineligible countries.
TransferWise borderless multi-currency accounts support transfers and switching with the following currencies
TransferWise borderless multi-currency accounts can generate local bank details in the following regions / currencies
If you’re going to become a new parent in Canada, you’re in luck. Refer back to this post for all of your questions about prenatal care and the birth process in Canada.