Student health insurance options outlined

Last September, the board of trustees approved a resolution in support of mandatory student health insurance. Vice President for Student Affairs Dr. Edward Whipple has provided some details regarding the new policy.

On March 13, Whipple sent an email message to all students on the main campus notifying them that students enrolled in eight or more credit hours on the main campus in fall 2006 will be required to have health coverage.

Whipple said there will be two ways for students to meet the requirement. Students who have health insurance coverage comparable to the University’s plan may simply sign a waiver to that effect. Students who do not already have comparable coverage must purchase health insurance through the University or from another vendor.

Since last fall, a series of meetings has been held to discuss what insurance coverage should be provided to best meet the needs of students. Much discussion has focused on whether to include or exclude abortion coverage. The Student Health Advisory Committee reviewed proposals from insurance companies, consulted with student leaders and met with potential vendors before making a recommendation on policy coverage.

Whipple said that, in consultation with the trustees and legal counsel, he has now finalized the terms and conditions of the coverage to be offered.

“We believe the University’s student health insurance program will give individuals the ability to make health choices based on their personal needs,” the vice president said.

The basic, 12-month plan will cost $1,234 per year. Optional insurance coverage for elective abortion will be available for an additional $60 per year. No portion of the premium for basic coverage will go toward elective abortion coverage.

Additional information will be provided to students prior to the opening of the 2006-07 academic year.
March 20, 2006