Provincial Benefits and Programs for Seniors
Service BC is the government’s main portal for accessing government services.
Seniors BC is a website with resources to help older adults in BC, as well as information for family and caregivers. Includes information on advance care planning, seniors housing, transportation, home and community care, and estate planning, etc.
The BC Seniors Guide is a booklet containing information on provincial and federal programs, with sections on benefits, health, lifestyle, housing, transportation, finances, safety and security, and other services. You can download the PDF version of the guide here, read it as an ebook here, or order a free print copy in English, French, Chinese or Punjabi from the Office of the Seniors Advocate, Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. • Call toll-free: 1-877-952-3181 • In Victoria, call: 250-952-3181 Pdf version of the guide in other languages:
- French version, 11th edition (2016) (PDF)
- Chinese version, 11th edition (2016) (PDF)
- Punjabi version, 11th edition (2016) (PDF)
- BC Healthy Living Secretariat – Age Friendly BC
- Think Health BC
- HealthLINK -Find Health Services + Resources
Older adults who are ineligible for OAS or GIS and need money for food, housing, clothing and other basic needs may be eligible for provincial welfare. They may also be eligible if they are over 65 and on OAS/GIS but are supporting a spouse and/or dependent children who do not receive any benefits and have very low incomes. If ineligible for welfare (no status) they may be eligible for hardship assistance. Older adults 60-64 on welfare are expected to do a job search and to apply for early CPP pension. Older adults receiving welfare may qualify for enhanced medical coverage from the Ministry of Health Services. Enhanced coverage includes:
- Medical Service Plan coverage;
- MSD-sponsored health assistance such as: orthodontia, medical supplies, medical equipment, extended therapies, orthotics, and medical transportation.
SAFER provides monthly cash payments to eligible BC residents. They must be 60+ and pay more than 30% of gross (before tax) monthly household income towards the rent. This includes the cost of pad rental for a manufactured home (trailer) owned and occupied. Those living in subsidized housing, equity co-ops, or receiving regular social assistance or PWD are not eligible.
The Senior’s Supplement is a monthly payment from the provincial government to low-income seniors who need a “top-up” to bring their OAS, GIS or federal Allowance incomes up to BC welfare levels. It is automatic if they qualify – they don’t need to apply. The Supplement is also automatically paid to people aged 60 to 64 who receive an Allowance and are married to an OAS pensioner. The Senior’s Supplement is available under BC’s Employment and Assistance Regulation.Senior’s Supplement Program, PO Box 9985 Stn Prov Govt, Victoria, BC, V8W 9R6
Phone: 1-866-866-0800 Press 4 Press 1
Assistive devices are “items that ease the strains of daily activities at home, at work, or at play. They include medical equipment, mobility aids, information technologies, practical aids, and gadgets to suit many different needs.” – Health Canada
- Fair PharmaCare helps B.C. families pay for eligible prescription drugs, dispensing fees and some medical supplies. For a full description of this program, including eligibility, visit here.
Programs for Property Owners