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Posted: March 15, 2018

Ability to get non-photo BC Services card extended

British Columbians enrolled in the Medical Services Plan (MSP) who have adopted a hyphenated surname, or a name other than their legal name, can continue to obtain a non-photo BC Services card.

This exemption was slated to run out on March 1, at which point citizens would have been required to get a photo BC Services card with their legal name.

In February 2013, the plan to roll out the BC Services card was announced. The plan requires all British Columbians to re-enroll in MSP over the next five years, tying it to the renewal of their driver’s licence, explained a Ministry of Health press release.

Since that time, individuals whose registered names with MSP did not match their names in the ICBC database have been issued non-photo BC Services cards. This practice is being extended to March 1, 2019.

Over the next several months, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Citizens’ Services will work with ICBC to review provincial naming standards for B.C. government-issued identification.

It is important to note that no one eligible for provincially insured medical services will have them denied. Currently, over 4.3 million residents have been issued a BC Services card. This represents approximately 90% of existing MSP beneficiaries.

Lead image: An example of a non-photo BC Services card. BC Government image

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