Best Doctors®

Best Doctors<sup>®</sup>

When faced with the uncertainty of a medical condition, trying to sort through the maze of information can be as stressful as the diagnosis itself. Best Doctors® provides clarity and understanding, helping to ensure the right information, the right diagnosis and the right treatment is received.

Best Doctors®1 offers a range of services to ensure clients have the information they need to move their healthcare forward with confidence.

Best Doctors services are available with some individual critical illness insurance and personal health insurance plans offered from Sun Life Financial.

The insured person has access to Best Doctors services while the policy is in effect, and up to 4 months after their policy ends. They can contact Best Doctors for any type or degree of medical uncertainty. Based on the information and details provided, Best Doctors will recommend which of their services would be appropriate for the described condition.

Best Doctors isn't part of the policy. We can't guarantee its availability. It may be withdrawn or modified at any time without any notice.

Services for clients with CII or PHI/HCC policies

Access and overview of services
How to access Best Doctors services

The insured person will need to contact Best Doctors at 1-877-419- 2378 or customer.ca@bestdoctors.com and provide their policy number. Upon verification by Best Doctors, they will have access to these Best Doctors services: InterConsultationSM, FindBestDocSM, FindBestCare®, Best Doctors 360°SM and Ask the ExpertSM.

Best Doctors® helps clients understand their medical condition to ensure they have the right diagnosis and the best treatment options.

Interconsultation™
  • Provides an in-depth review of the client's medical files including diagnostic test results and the retesting of pathology.
  • A leading medical specialist recommends diagnosis and treatment options.
  • The client receives a comprehensive report they can share with their treating physician.
  • Can potentially reduce serious complications that result from a misdiagnosis.
  • Helps the client and their treating physician determine the proper course of action.
FindBestDoc™
  • Best Doctors® will conduct a customized physician search and recommend leading Canadian specialists who are accepting new patients. 1, 2 Access to a Canadian specialist requires a referral from the client's treating physician.
FindBestCare®
  • When expert physicians or leading care facilities are required outside of Canada, Best Doctors® will search their global database on the client's behalf. They'll provide up to 3 recommendations for doctors or treatment facilities that are accepting new patients.2
Best Doctors® 360°®
  • The client can call Best Doctors for medical information and resources, one-on-one support and customized health coaching for a wide range of health concerns, from simple to serious.
  • The client can receive healthcare information on topics such as wait times, drug funding programs, and health assessment tools.
Ask the Expert™
  • The client's medical questions will be sent to a leading physician who specializes in their condition.
  • The client will receive a written report with answers and advice addressing specific questions, so that they can better understand their condition and make well-informed decisions about healthcare.
Mental Health Navigator
  • Get guidance on a mental health condition that isn’t improving or if you are questioning a treatment plan.
  • Only available for Sun CII

The insured person will be able to access Best Doctors® services up to 4 months after their policy ends.

Policies eligible for Best Doctors services

Since Best Doctors® services became available with the purchase of Sun CII plans (March 11, 2005) and PHI/HCC plans(September 1, 2008), certain changes have been made to the services being offered and the criteria for accessing these services.

The following chart outlines which Best Doctors® services are currently available to clients based on the date they purchased their Sun CII or PHI/HCC plan.

Products Period sold Who is eligible Services available Access criteria
Sun CII From March 11, 2005 to
present

Unlimited access to the insured person, their spouse, dependent children, parents and parents-in-law.

The insured person can also extend a one time gift of services to their grandparent or sibling.

  • Best Doctors 360°®
  • InterConsultationSM
  • FindBestDocSM
  • FindBestCareSM
  • Ask the ExpertSM
  • Mental Health Navigator
Suspect they have a medical condition, even if it is not a listed condition stated in the policy
PHI and HCC Series 6, 7 and 8 From September 1, 2008 to present

Unlimited access to the insured person, their spouse, dependent children, parents and parents-in-law.

The insured person can also extend a one time gift of services to their grandparent or sibling.

  • Best Doctors 360°®
  • InterConsultationSM
  • FindBestDocSM
  • FindBestCareSM
  • Ask the ExpertSM

Suspect they have a medical condition, even if it is not a listed condition stated in the policy

Family coverage and gifting options

The insured person, the spouse, dependent children1, parents and parents-in-law can use this service while the insurance is in place any time there is suspicion of a medical condition.

The insured person can also extend a one time gift of services to their grandparent or sibling.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
When are clients eligible for Best Doctors® services?

Clients are eligible for Best Doctors® if they purchase a critical illness insurance (CII) or personal health insurance (PHI) policy that includes this service. 

What if the client is ill or has a pre-existing condition?

If the client has access to Best Doctors® through a CII or PHI policy that is in force, there is no waiting period to access the Best Doctors® services if the client is ill or has a pre-existing condition.

Can Best Doctors® arrange for an individual to "jump the queue"?

Best Doctors® does not own or operate private healthcare clinics. They work within the Canadian healthcare system and have no leverage to help members jump the queue. Instead, Best Doctors® services are designed to ensure clients are in the right queue.

Who decides who is a Best Doctor?

Simply, their medical peers recommend them. Only current Best Doctors® receive a survey to nominate and vote for Best Doctors®. The survey asks one simple question that replicates the way that doctors find the best care for themselves and their families: "If you or a loved one needed a doctor in your specialty, who would you choose?"

Asking this one simple question replicates the informal peer-to-peer referral process that doctors themselves use to determine the most appropriate physician for an individual case. Physicians are then screened for licensure, certification and disciplinary actions. To ensure the integrity of the database, the process is repeated every 18 months.

Over the past 20 years, the global database of Best Doctors® has grown to 53,000 specialists, including nearly 2,000 Canadian physicians. Best Doctors® does not provide or accept fees for the privilege of inclusion in the database. Physicians can only be accepted into the database through a peer-reviewed nomination poll.

Who pays the Best Doctors® physician for their services?

Best Doctors® pays them a consulting fee if they agree to participate in an InterConsultation.

How will Best Doctors® maintain my privacy?

Best Doctors® complies with all relevant provincial, national and international laws and regulations. Your specific name and medical information will not be shared with anyone, including your employer and insurance company, without your written consent. On occasion, they may use de-identified information to help improve the Best Doctors® program.

Do insured people and their eligible family members need to live in Canada to access Best Doctors?

No. Insureds and their eligible family members don’t have to live in Canada to access Best Doctors services. There are additional considerations for non-Canadian residents:

  • Clients must initiate cases through the Canadian Best Doctors call center. Eligible users can also access the Best Doctors member portal online if the toll free number isn’t accessible.
  • Insured people and their eligible family members can use services such as Expert Medical Opinion but some services may not be available depending on the country the person is in at the time.
  • Clients using the Expert Medical Opinion might have to collect their own medical records and have them translated but that will be determined at intake with the nurse.
Who can initiate contact with Best Doctors when someone other than the insured requires Best Doctors services?

Anyone covered can call the Best Doctors call center or start a case through the online member portal. Best Doctors will ask how they have access to the service. The caller should provide the name of the insured person and the Sun Life policy number.