• zInternationalStudents Blog

  • Saturday, January 19, 2019

  • Is a University-Run Insurance Plan Right for You?

    Filed Under: Health Insurance
Many universities in the United States now have requirements mandating that all students have a medical insurance plan in order to enroll at their school. Knowing that many students do not have insurance, the schools then offer university-run plans, in which they set the price, terms, and conditions of coverage. While some students, especially ones from foreign countries, without medical insurance may find this convenient, you may find these plans aren't the best option for you.

The main benefit of these plans is that they are convenient. You don't need to apply for them; you'll simply fill out some paperwork and take it to your Registrar's office or public health office. You make the payment and you're covered. It is a fairly simple process.

But there are very important downsides as well. Quite often these plans will stipulate that if you get medical help somewhere other than a university clinic or hospital, you'll be charged extra out-of-network fees that can really add up. So your choice of where to get medical assistance can be quite limited. You also may find that many prescriptions you need are not covered under the plans.

These plans can also be expensive. You'll pay a flat fee per semester, plus co-pays for your medical visits and your prescriptions. These fees are often much higher than those offered by international student health insurance, which is designed specifically to offer visiting students affordable coverage. You may be able to cut your bills in half with an international student medical policy, while also keeping your options open in regards to where to get healthcare service from. Commenting is not available in this channel entry.

International Student Insurance (requires student status)
Visitor Insurance (does not require student status)