Moving to Edmonton can be overwhelming enough, but trying to set up Edmonton health services can just as overwhelming if you are moving here from outside of Alberta.
Get Your Alberta Health Care Card
There is ‘currently’ no monthly premiums to get your Alberta Health Care coverage, once you’ve been a resident in Alberta for 3 months. Whether you are buying a home or renting, once you have an address established or know where you’ll be staying, you should immediately apply for Alberta Health. You generally must apply for Alberta Health Care Card if you plan to live in Alberta for 12 months or more. If you are moving from another Canadian province, you may want to check your provincial plan and how it applies while moving across country. Ideally, have specialist appointments completed in your home province before moving to Alberta, and bring 3-4 months of medications with you.
You can apply for your health card online and see eligibility requirements here: https://www.alberta.ca/ahcip-how-to-apply.aspx
Find a Family Doctor
Although this isn’t always the easiest search to find the right doctor for you – it is easier by calling 811 Healthlink services. Simply dial ‘811’ from any phone in Alberta or call They can refer you to family physicians who are accepting new patients.
Call an Ambulance
You can call an request an ambulance, fire or police support by dialling ‘911’ from any phone in Alberta. Please know your address or be prepared to give as close of directions as you can to where you are and stay on the line with them. Wait times can be 5-10 minutes depending where you live and level of emergency. The ambulance will take you to the nearest hospital with availability to receive you – but it could also be a surrounding hospital. There is a fee for ambulance services in Alberta and you will receive an invoice from Alberta Health Services. If you have private health insurance through an employer, you may be able to submit your ambulance bill for reimbursement.
Hospital Emergency Rooms
If you or someone you can know can safely take the time to get you to an emergency room, you may choose to drive or access one of these walk in emergency clinics. You should be seen in an Emergency room only if your care needs are urgent and cannot wait to be seen by an after hours clinic. You will need to show your Alberta Health Care Card and tell a triage nurse your symptoms. Your wait time will be dependent on the severity of your reason to be seen. Wait times are often 1-6 hours in length.
You can search for the nearest emergency rooms and see their estimated wait times here: https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/waittimes/waittimes.aspx
Edmonton Hospital Emergency Rooms
University of Alberta Hospital
8440 112 Street NW
Royal Alexandra Hospital
10240 Kingsway NW
Grey Nuns Community Hospital
1100 Youville Drive NW
Stollery Childrens Hospital
8440 112 Street
Misericordia Community Hospital
16940 87 Avenue
Northeast Community Health Centre
14007 50 Street NW
Surrounding Edmonton Area Hospital Emergency Rooms
Sturgeon Community Hospital
201 Boudreau Road
St. Albert, Alberta
Devon General Hospital
101 Erie Street S
Stathcona Community Hospital
9000 Emerald Drive
Sherwood Park, Alberta
Westview Health Centre
4405 South Park Drive
Stony Plain, Alberta
Leduc Community Hospital
4210 48 Street
Fort Saskatchewan Community Hospital
9401 86 Avenue
Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta
After Hour Clinics / Medicentres
If you do not have a family physician, or if you are not ill enough to go to the Emergency Room, but still need to see a doctor – you might want to look for an after hours clinic or a medicentre. This can be a great option if you think you need an antibiotic for a routine infection, minor injury treatment, non-urgent concern if your doctor is not available to see you in time. You can find a medicentre at this link: https://www.medicentres.com/ or you can do a search for a WALK IN CLINIC or AFTER HOURS CLINIC near you.
Health Advice Through 811
If you are not sure if your condition warrants seeing a doctor, or not sure of where to go to an after hours clinic, calling 811 can help provide answers. Simply dial ‘811’ and you’ll be connected to a professional to help you get the right care and support needed. They also offer dementia advice & support, health advice, mental health support, addictions support, rehabilitation advice, nutrition advice, where to find after hour clinics or care services.
Community Health Services
There are a number of services provided by community health nurses in your neighborhood. These centres may provide services to new moms, infant immunization programs, lactation consultations, registered dietician services, adult immunization programs, and additional community development services. You can find additional information on where to find your local community health centre here: https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/findhealth/service.aspx?id=1000870
Home Care Services
Presently care in the home is provided at no additional cost in the home, but the services are limited. Home care will be provided in the community after surgery or signficant health issue, to help with medication administration and wound care. Additional home care services will assist individuals get dressed/undressed, manage medications, assist with showering/bathing. If someone needs additional care and support, or services not provided by Alberta Health Home Care, then you must purchase private home care services from a private nursing or companion service.
Understanding The Public & Private Health Options
It can be confusing to know which health services are covered by your Alberta Health Care Card. Generally, Alberta Health covers services related to physician and specialist appointments, surgery, hospital care, emergency room care and many diagnostic testing.
The following services are NOT covered, so you must pay the fee set out by the provider:
Eye Exams & Prescription Glasses
Dental Care Services
Mobility Aids & Equipment
The health system is much more complex then this, but hopefully this gives you a brief introduction into Edmonton health services you can access once you have your Alberta Health Care Card.