Group Insurance Solutions
Fall 2012, Volume 10, Issue 3
Premium Coverage is a seasonal
newsletter created and issued by
Group Insurance Solutions.
The information provided in
this newsletter is intended to
be general in nature and should
not be taken as advice or as a
recommendation about insurance.
For specific details regarding
insurance protection, refer to
the Terms and Conditions of your
If you have any questions please
Group Insurance Solutions Presents Exceptional Achievement Citation Awards
This past June, Group Insurance Solutions
was very proud to present our Western
Communities Foundation Exceptional
Achievement Citation and Bursary Award to
MARIE-ROSE HANYURWIMFURA attending Nelson
McIntyre Collegiate and MATHIEU FILLION from
College Jeanne Sauve.
This annual bursary is given to students who intend to seek
further education and who have overcome adversity and / or
have displayed outstanding community spirit.
Both honourees are very deserving of this award and we
commend them on their achievements. Congratulations
Marie-Rose and Mathieu!
Europe has always been a favourite vacation
destination for Canadians.
Due to good international relationships with European
countries, travel has been easy and hassle-free. But before
you plan your trip to Europe, make sure you are informed
about the new entrance requirements.
In addition to a passport or visa, some European countries
are now requiring proof of travel insurance. According
to Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, countries
such as the Czech Republic, Poland and Ukraine will not allow
entry without insurance.
As your provincial or territorial healthcare plan may not meet
the European coverage requirements for health insurance,
travellers are encouraged to purchase additional private
insurance. Group insurance plans such as yours will often
meet or exceed these requirements.
Before you embark on your European adventure be sure to
find out about your destination’s entrance requirements at:
Look for the countries you are planning to visit to find out
if your insurance meets the minimum requirements for
entry. Any requirements can be found under the Entry/
Exit Requirements section of each page. Be aware that
requirements can change from day to day.
Be prepared and enjoy your vacation to the fullest.
– Reproduced from the Spring 2012 issue of WEST,
Western Canada’s magazine
School Bus Safety
September means back to school
for our children – it's important to
know the safety rules regarding
school bus flashing lights.
A school bus with flashing amber
lights means it's about to stop.
You must prepare to stop.
When you approach a school bus
with flashing red lights (whether
from the front or back), you must
stop at least 5 metres (15 ft.)
from the bus.
Remember that children may be
crossing the street in front of the
bus – wait for the flashing lights
to turn off before proceeding.
Passing a school bus with flashing
lights could result in the injury
or even death of a child, and a
heavy fine / demerit points on
Help keep our children safe –
stop for school buses!
– Bert Walker, Assistant Vice-President,
Claims & Personal Lines
Used with permission of Western Financial Group
Sipan Island, Croatia
Take Precautions while Travelling
The same safety rules apply while abroad as at home,
only more so. Foreigners are usually at greater risk than
locals. In some countries, foreigners are specifically
• Be sure not to wander into unknown areas – find out how
safe they are first.
• Never leave drinks unattended while in bars or nightclubs
and never accept food or drink from strangers. Drugs may
be present that could put you at risk of assault / robbery.
• Watch your luggage and make sure it is locked.
• Never take anything, even an envelope, across a border
for someone else.
• Do not display large amounts of money or expensive
jewellery in public.
• Use a money belt or a case with concealed sections for
• Keep a separate record of your traveller’s cheques and
• Never carry your passport, travel tickets, identification
documents, cash, credit cards, and insurance papers
together. If you do so, you risk being left with no
identification or funds in case of theft or loss.
• Use the safety deposit box at your hotel. Never leave
valuables in your room.
– Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
Carbon Monoxide (CO) is a toxic gas that can occur in homes and buildings as a by-product
of a fuel burning process. CO is colourless, odourless, tasteless and non-irritating – but
it can be deadly.
Appliances such as furnaces, kitchen stoves, hot water heaters and automobiles can produce
carbon monoxide if not provided with adequate fresh air to allow proper combustion and ventilation.
When a faulty or unusual condition exists – such as incomplete combustion or a cracked heat exchanger in a
furnace – carbon monoxide may be vented into areas where people are present.
At times, wood burning fireplaces / wood stoves can draw a lot of air from the room up into the chimney. If a
furnace is located and running in the vicinity of the wood stove and does not have a fresh air intake, it can result
in fumes and carbon monoxide from the furnace to be drawn back into the room rather than up the chimney.
Carbon monoxide poisoning may be difficult to diagnose. Its symptoms are similar to the flu, which
may include headache, nausea, fatigue and dizzy spells. Often a sign of carbon monoxide build up is plants with
Preventing Carbon Monoxide Poisoning:
• Have your heating appliances and chimneys checked annually
by a qualified contractor.
• Install a fresh air intake for your furnace and wood fired
• Annually inspect and clean wood burning stoves and chimneys
to ensure proper combustion and ventilation.
• Do NOT run your car for extended periods inside your
garage – even with the garage door open. Carbon Monoxide
in the exhaust will build up and if your garage is attached to
your house, CO will seep into your house.
• Do NOT use wood, oil or kerosene fired space heaters in
your home or garage unless vented to the outside with an
• Do NOT use barbecues inside your home or garage even
if the doors are open. If your garage is attached to your home,
the fumes could find their way into the house and collect in the
Trevi Fountain, Rome
Life Insurance Coverage
Your group benefits plan may
offer you a Life Insurance
benefit – but do you have enough
coverage for your spouse and
dependents to maintain their
standard of living if something
were to happen to you?
When determining the amount of
Life Insurance required consider
immediate needs such as funeral
expenses, debts, taxes and legal
fees, as well as ongoing costs such
as educational expenses, food,
taxes, housing costs, etc.
To meet the need for additional
Life Insurance, your policy may
provide Optional Life Insurance
for you and your spouse. This
would allow employees to add
additional coverage to the Life
Insurance amounts provided
through the group plan.
Employees would need to be
medically underwritten for
Optional Life Insurance coverage
and are generally responsible
for 100% of the premium if
approved. Contact your Customer
Service Representative for more
If the Carbon Monoxide Alarm Sounds:
– Stephen Redmond, Manager,
Employee Benefits Service Centre
detector in your home
could save your
1. If the CO alarm sounds in your home – yell to alert / wake
2. Immediately open doors and windows to get fresh air into
the house and dilute any carbon monoxide in the air.
3. Check the house to make sure everyone is awake and moving
4. Determine if anyone is exhibiting symptoms of CO poisoning
– headaches, nausea, fatigue, dizziness.
5. If there are any signs of CO poisoning, evacuate the building
and get occupants out into fresh air.
6. Call 911 from a neighbour’s house / cell phone, advise of
possible CO problem and request an ambulance.
7. Shut down any equipment / appliance that is found to be
suspect and have it checked immediately.
8. Once levels of CO have been reduced to a safe level
attempt to reset the detector(s) and allow occupants to enter
the building if alarm is clear.
– Ken Fingler, Director, Risk Management
Group Insurance Solutions is
focused on respecting your privacy
and maintaining confidentiality of
information. We have safeguards
in place to protect your personal,
business, and financial information
which adheres to the Ten Privacy
Principles as covered by the
Personal Information Protection
and Electronic Document Act
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RETURN UNDELIVERABLE CANADIAN ADDRESSES TO:
Group Insurance Solutions
777 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg, MB R3G 0N3
Habitat for Humanity Home Dedication
Last October, employee volunteers from Group
Insurance Solutions worked together to help build
affordable Winnipeg housing.
A grant provided by the Western Communities
Foundation went towards building the home
sustainably, incorporating the highest level
of energy efficiency, water efficiency, and
We were very proud to attend the home dedication
on May 23, 2012 where the keys were presented to
the deserving new homeowners.
Our Employees Have Spirit!
Group Insurance Solutions
employees have been very busy
over the last couple of months,
getting involved in the community
and supporting some great causes!
On June 13 th we
walked in support
of The Western
raised are used to place a defibrillator
in every Western Financial Group
community and sponsor the
Exceptional Achievement Citation
and Bursary Awards.
On June 21 st we
rode in the Big Bike
Ride raising funds
for the Heart and
Our next Habitat
for Humanity build
is September 26-28 th
– we will help make
accessible to low-income families
who could not otherwise afford to
own a home.