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General News · 5th August 2020
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Medical Assured Loading on BC Ferries during COVID-19

Effective July 30, 2020, the Province of British Columbia implemented Ministerial Order M256 relating to Medical Assured Loading.
Ministerial Order M256 will be in place for the duration for the Provincial state of emergency.

Medical Assured Loading is intended to reduce time at the terminal for those in need of urgent care where an extended wait would cause risk to their health. Medical Assured Loading is not available for general, elective or routine doctor, dentist or specialist appointments.

To access this program, customers will communicate directly with their medical practitioners to obtain an official Medical Assured Loading letter.

Eligibility Criteria and Conditions

To be eligible for Medical Assured Loading on BC Ferries, patients must:
Be travelling with a completed Travel Assistance Program (TAP) form, including Medical Services Plan confirmation number
Be travelling to emergency medical care or;
Be returning from medical treatment where discharge time is unknown and medical condition would make waiting at terminal detrimental to recovery or;
Other medical conditions as deemed appropriate by the referring medical practitioner


Eligible Examples:

Fractures requiring x-ray
Injuries requiring hospital care
Active cancer treatment
Chemo/radiotherapy treatments
Dialysis
Pneumonia
Abdominal pain requiring hospital care
Returning from major surgery

Non-eligible Examples:
Regular travel
General medical appointments
Specialist appointments
Follow-up appointments
Non-urgent dental appointments
Routine exams
Specialty services (lab tests, radiology, immunizations, physiotherapy)

Travel Requirements

Customers travelling on Medical Assured Loading are required to:
Arrive at the ticket booth at least 30 minutes in advance of the scheduled sailing time
Have both the Medical Assured Loading letter from a medical practitioner and the completed TAP form available to present to the ticket agent or vessel staff


Travel Assistance Program (TAP)

Medical Assured Loading works in conjunction with the Travel Assistance Program provided by the BC Provincial Government. Medical Assured Loading will only be granted to patients travelling with a completed TAP form (pink form), including Medical Services Plan confirmation number. TAP is a corporate partnership between the Ministry of Health and private transportation carriers. Additional information on the TAP program can be found here:
https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/health/accessing-health-care/tap-bc/travel-assistance-program-tap-bc

100% Reservable Routes
Customers travelling on the following routes are required to contact BC Ferries’ Customer Service Centre 1-888-BC-FERRY (1-888-223-3779) and an agent will make a reservation on an available sailing.

Port Hardy – Prince Rupert
Prince Rupert – Skidegate
Port Hardy – Bella Coola, including sailings to Bella Bella, Klemtu, Shearwater and Ocean Falls
Tsawwassen – Southern Gulf Islands

Information for Medical Professionals is available at https://www.bcferries.com/about/medical-assured-loading.html


Note: This Service Notice applies to the following route(s):
- All Routes
- Haida Gwaii (Alliford) - Haida Gwaii (Skidegate)
- Brentwood - Mill Bay
- Vancouver Island (Buckley Bay) - Denman Island West
- Vancouver Island (Campbell River) - Quadra Island (Quathiaski Cove)
- Chemainus - Penelakut Island - Thetis Island
- Comox (Little River) - Powell River (Westview)
- Cortes Island(Whaletown) - Quadra Island (Heriot Bay)
- Crofton - Salt Spring Island (Vesuvius Bay)
- Sechelt (Earls Cove) - Powell River (Saltery Bay)
- Gambier (New Brighton) - Keats (Keats Landing) - Sunshine Coast (Langdale)
- Hornby Island (Shingle Spit) - Denman Island East (Gravelly Bay)
- Vancouver (Horseshoe Bay) - Bowen Island (Snug Cove)
- Vancouver (Horseshoe Bay) - Sunshine Coast (Langdale)
- Vancouver (Horseshoe Bay) - Nanaimo (Departure Bay)
- Nanaimo Harbour - Gabriola Island (Descanso Bay)
- Port Hardy (Bear Cove) - Bella Bella (McLoughlin Bay) - Prince Rupert
- Port Hardy (Bear Cove) - Mid Coast - Prince Rupert including Discovery Coast Connector
- Port McNeill - Alert Bay (Cormorant Island) - Sointula (Malcolm Island)
- Powell River (Westview) - Texada (Blubber Bay)
- Prince Rupert - Haida Gwaii (Skidegate)
- Victoria (Swartz Bay) - Salt Spring Island (Fulford Harbour)
- Victoria (Swartz Bay) - Southern Gulf Islands
- Vancouver (Tsawwassen) - Nanaimo (Duke Point)
- Vancouver (Tsawwassen) - Southern Gulf Islands
- Vancouver (Tsawwassen) - Victoria (Swartz Bay)