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Key Mental Health Resources

  • Call 1-833-456-4566 for Canada's Suicide Crisis Hotline
  • MENTAL HEALTH HOTLINE 1-877-303-2642. Translation services available.
  • Calgary Distress Line: 403-266-4357 (403-266-HELP) Delivers 24-hour support, free crisis counseling and resource referral services to Calgary and the surrounding area.​
  • Mobile Response Team Call the Calgary Distress Line at 403-266-4357, and ask for Mental Health Crisis Triage. They offer urgent mental health support, assessments and referrals (mobile if necessary).
  • Guidelines on how to respond to disclosed Domestic Violence, Abuse or Neglect


For a comprehensive list of counselling resources, see this handount.


Below is a list of financial and counselling resources available for patients with diabetes. Programs change from time to time, so please let us know about required edits: Email address

Medication Coverage 

Emergency Prescription Coverage: If your patient is unable to afford medication and/or diabetes supplies please provide them this handout: Emergency Prescription Coverage. The patient is to call the number attached in handout (1-866-644-5135), this is short term coverage, typically only a calendar month. Questions that will be asked are included in the handout. Translation services are also available upon request.

Alberta Blue Cross Non-Group Benefits

Private insurance to assist with the coverage of medication and other health benefits. See this page for details. Alberta Blue Cross Formulary of Covered Medications: Interactive Drug Benefit List .   The form for Special Authorization of GLP-1, DPP-4 or SGLT is here. All other SA forms: Blue Cross Forms page.

Application form: Blue Cross Non-group coverage Application

Premiums for a single adult are $63.50 per month, for a family $118.00 per month. People who make less than $20,970 as a single adult, $33,240 as a family with no children, or $39,250 as a family with children qualify for a premium subsidy. Application for Premium Subsidy is here.

Alberta Government Sponsored Drug Programs

See this link for information about non-group, seniors, and palliative coverage programs.

Compassionate Programs

Many companies (but not all) offer compassionate supply of medications on a  case-by-case basis. Family doctors can call the 1-800 number for the company to enquire.

Dispensing fees

Patients may investigate switching to pharmacies with lower dispensing fees e.g. Walmart and Costco.

Lilly Canada

Mounjaro (Tirzepatide)

myMounjaro program provides 20% off to patients meeting low income guidelines set out by Eli Lilly. Direct patients to this website: Home ( or print off and provide enrolment card with QR code.

NovoNordisk Insulins (NovoRapid and Tresiba) and Glucagon

  • Note: NovoRapid is only provided in 10 mL vials for compassionate supply; the client must be taught syringe use. 
  • To apply, the client must first have a NovoNordisk Client ID number as listed on a NovoNordisk Diabetes Care Program card. These cards are either physical (DCC supply room) or virtual as provided by the educator contacting Dan at  or Farouk at 
  • Clients without insurance can see if they are eligible for NovoRapid and/or Tresiba through the Novo Nordisk Diabetes Care Program online at or over the phone 1-833-595-1899. 
  • There are some eligibility questions (household income, number of dependents, province, and patient must have no insurance).
  • Baqsimi (nasal glucagon) compassionate program (Lilly Patient Assistance Program) is available by calling 1-877-545-5922. 
  • Program to help newcomers to Canada:Novo Nordisk Response Program. Jorja has a supply of electronic STI cards for DCC staff. Contact her for one if you have a patient who would benefit.


  • Medication Certificates: Patients visit,, click "Download a certificate" (no personal information is required). They show the certificate via phone photo (or can print it) to the pharmacist to receive a free box. Once only. (1 box= 5 disposable pens of Apidra, Toujeo, Soliqua or 3 disposable pens of Toujeo Doublestar).  The patient must have a prescription. 
  • When the patient needs more of the medication, they may request 6 month supply through an online program (paper compassionate request forms no longer accepted). Prescriber signature is required. Program can be accessed through the website: (Access Code : SANOFI) 

Viatris: Semglee and Kirsty

Covers 25% of the cost of insulins regardless of other coverage the patient might have. For example, if the patient has 80% coverage, meaning that they pay 20% of the cost before adding dispensing fees, the 25% from Biocon will cover out of pocket expenses, and the additional 5% is applied to the dispensing fees. For Coverage, the patient provides this 25% off copay certificate

The company has a compassionate care program. Contact  780.993.3943


Diabetes Supplies

Alberta Blue Cross Private

Patients are encouraged to ask their pharmacist if their private coverage allows for glucose test strips and/or sensors. Sensors may be included under different headings e.g. blood glucose meter or medical device.

Ascensia (Contour meters) Compassionate Program

25 test strips – Patient to call 1-800-268-7200 to see if they qualify

Dexcom G7 Patient Benefit Program

Program will cover 20% of the cost with printed or digital certificates presented to the pharmacist. Provide coupon to patient: DEXCOM_G7_TearSheet_v1r6_ROC 

GE200 meter:

Strips are less expensive, and there are reductions though Innovicares Card. LINK: GE200 Glucose Test Strips | innoviCares

Insulin Pump Therapy Program (IPTP)

Those in the Alberta IPTP can receive up to 700 strips per 100 days, plus infusion sets or pods.

Less expensive strips

Have the patient ask about brands with less expensive strips at the pharmacy.

Libre Compassionate Care Program ...also see NIHB below

  • Based on income less than $ 50 000 a year. Form for patient: Libre compassionate program application. Need to provide Notice of Assessment and private insurance denial of coverage letter, if they have private insurance that will not cover the cost of CGM sensors. Must be on insulin.
  • Prescriber (physician or nurse practitioner) fills out form and faxes it.


Libre and Dexcom sensors are covered under NIHB, for all First Nations and Inuit people with type 1 diabetes of any age and additionally, those 2-19 on any insulin.  See this link for more details
Steps for Coverage:

  1. Send prescription to pharmacy
  2. Pharmacy calls NIHB Exception Line at 1-800-580-0950
  3. Pharmacist to provide Patient NIHB #,  DIN# (Dexcom DIN # 3-pack sensors 97799136, Dexcom Transmitter 97799135  or Libre2 Sensor 97799075), Prescriber Lic. #, Pharmacy #
  4. NIHB verifies they are on Insulin


Main Roche Webpage has link to obtain free meter with 10 strips: Get your FREE** Accu-Chek Guide Meter NOW! | Accu-Chek® 

Seniors Alberta Blue Cross

Plan members with diabetes will receive coverage for diabetes supplies purchased from a licensed pharmacy, up to a maximum of $2,400 per eligible person depending on the method of diabetes management.


Financial Supports and Options

Covering medications, diabetes supplies and/or other expenses. Patients are encouraged to meet with  psychosocial services in their PCN or diabetes centre to review potential additional options available to help assist with the costs of managing diabetes. If there is nothing specific listed on this page, patients could also consider approaching alternate groups such as Lions/Lioness Clubs, Royal Purple organization, Legions, Larger companies/business (sometime either the business or employees may have funds they collect for community goodwill funding), or churches

AISH (Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped)

Financial and health benefits for Albertans who have a permanent medical condition that prevents them from earning a living. Financial benefits provided are listed here. For more information, and how to apply, see this page.

Alberta 211

Patients can call or visit  to find community resources and financial supports for other concerns including tax preparation services

Alberta Adult Health Benefit

Covers the cost of medication, diabetes supplies, ambulance, among other things. It does not cover Continuous Glucose Monitors (CGM). However, people can apply for the Libre Compassionate Program in combination with this benefit. This benefit is available to low income Albertans meeting the guidelines in Table 1 below.
Application form is here. The completed application can be mailed, faxed or sent by email to  

Alberta Supports

Help to access more than 30 programs and 120 services for seniors, people with disabilities, job seekers, parents and families, homeless, financial assistance, abuse, and family violence prevention. Call 1-877-644-9992 province-wide (TTY: 1-800-232-7215). More information on the website: 

Alberta Works Income Support

For Albertans who need assistance paying for basic expenses like food, clothing, and shelter. This program is available to low income Albertans according to Table 1 below. See this link for a summary of benefits available. To apply, people can go to this website, or call 1-877-644-9992.

Diabetes Canada: Supports and Services for People with Diabetes

See this link for a listing of programs and supports for people across Canada, broken down by province and zone. The resource was last updated in 2018.

Disability Tax Credit

People with Type 1 Diabetes qualify for a tax credit when filing taxes with CRA. They need to fill out Form T2201, available here, and have their physician fill out the appropriate section (page 15).

Employment Insurance (EI)

Requires the person to have sufficient insurable hours (630 h for Calgary). See this link for more information. Go to this site to apply online. Available benefits include:

  • Regular benefits: if you have lost your job through no fault of your own.
  • Sickness benefits: if you are unable to work due to illness, injury or quarantine.
  • Maternity/ parental benefits: if you're pregnant, have recently given birth, are adopting a child or are caring for a newborn.
  • Caregiver benefits: if you are providing care or support to a critically ill or injured person or someone needing end-of-life care 

Food Resources

See this link for support in finding low or no cost food.

Research Trials 

Research trials cover various medications and diabetes supplies. Check out the website here.


Diabetes in Pregnancy Resources

Best Beginning Program

Free supportive health service for pregnant women who are experiencing any of the following: low income, language/cultural barriers, social barriers, mental health/addiction concerns, isolation, under age 19 AND they need information and support to make healthy choices during pregnancy. 

Services include: support from nurses, dietitians, social work, and outreach workers, group health education and peer support, children’s programming (1-6 years old), prenatal vitamins, healthy snacks, community and health resources.

The referral form is here.

Calgary Immigrant Women's Association (CIWA)

Supports immigrant and refugee women, girls, and their families. There are more than fifty programs addressing settlement needs, language and employment training, family matters, counselling, parenting, and other supports. To refer, call 403-444-1758 or email . The diabetes Social Worker can also assist in completing referral.

Made by Momma

Non profit organization that helps families facing situations of adversity and crisis by providing: healthy prepared meals, baked goods, baby essentials, children’s items, supportive in home visits.

The referral form is here. Patients can self-refer, or have social work assist.


Mental Health Resources

For a comprehensive list of counselling resources, see this handout.


Access Mental Health

Access MH is a non-urgent AHS service providing telephone-based screening/needs assessment, consultation, service navigation and referral. Clinicians are familiar with both Alberta Health Services and community-based programs and will explore all available options to make the best recommendations for the identified clinical need. Call: 403-943-1500.

Crisis Helplines

  • Canada's Suicide Crisis Hotline: Call 1-833-456-4566
  • MENTAL HEALTH HOTLINE 1-877-303-2642. Translation services available.
  • Calgary Distress Line: 403-266-4357 (403-266-HELP) Delivers 24-hour support, free crisis counseling and resource referral services to Calgary and the surrounding area.​
  • Mobile Response Team Call the Calgary Distress Line at 403-266-4357, and ask for Mental Health Crisis Triage. They offer urgent mental health support, assessments and referrals (mobile if necessary).

Brief Crisis Counselling

  • Community Connect YYC: A group of Calgary-based agencies dedicated to helping community members to quickly and easily access social support services when they need it most. Use the online booking tool, available 24/7.

Longer Term Counselling

  • Alberta 211: Call or text 211 or visit . This is Alberta’s online directory to help you navigate to resources for mental health, finances, addiction, crisis, disability, employment, food, housing, indigenous peoples, legal & more.
  • Support for people who are feeling isolated or lonely. The program provides information, resources and community referrals as needed. See this link for more information, and to refer.

Mental Health Resources




Table 1: Income thresholds
for Alberta Adult Health Benefit / Alberta Works Income Support 

 Family Maximum income
Single adult $16,580
1 adult + 1 child $26,023
1 adult + 2 children $31,010
1 adult + 3 children $36,325
1 adult + 4 children* $41,957
Couple, no children $23,212
Couple + 1 child $31,237
Couple + 2 children $36,634
Couple + 3 children $41,594
Couple + 4 children* $46,932

 * For each additional child, add $4,973. People often need to include their Notice of Assessment and list of medications with the application.