Everyone knows that College is expensive. In planning to meet these expenses health insurance for College students may be low on the list, but it could be first on the list of possible financial disasters that can derail all your well thought out plans.
There are several ways that College students can meet their health insurance needs. Many family plans allow the student to remain on the family plan past the age of 18 as long as they are enrolled in a minimum number of credit hours at a College or University. Many schools also have basic health insurance programs that are offered to students. Some schools make insurance mandatory.
There are also privately offered health insurance plans just for College Students. Often, these represent the best choice. The problem with keeping the student on the same family plan that they have been on since childhood is usually the cost. Family insurance is expensive, has high deductibles and extensive exclusions. The private health plans generally have much lower premiums. This is because College students as a whole are healthy and less prone to injury and illness than smaller children.
The plans offered by the Colleges themselves are too often what are called “bare bones” policies. They do not provide the comprehensive coverage of the private College student plans. They also do not allow the freedom of choice. They will most likely require treatment be given by doctors or clinics associated with the School. The majority of private College student insurance plans will allow treatment by anyone selected by the student or their family.
Usually, the number of credit hours required to qualify for Student Insurance plans is lower than family plans. The policies allow for breaks in the educational process of short duration, and are transferable from school to school. Most plans have reasonable deductibles and are especially geared toward catastrophic situations with very high upper coverage limits.
The Student Insurance plans are subject to the same pressure from increasingly high medical costs as all other forms of health insurance. This means that they do have exclusions, and knowledge of these exclusions is necessary in comparing and evaluating policies. Most will not pay for expenses relating to pregnancy, for example, despite the very real risk of that condition in today’s educational environment. Your Insurance Agent can guide you to the best Student Health plans and suggest any necessary supplemental insurance to make sure any gaps are filled.