Students are very mobile these days. There are so many specialized subjects, and expensive facilities needed to impart them, that studying abroad is very common. The universities encourage this migration of students by many attractive schemes to enrich academic diversity.
Most foreign students study in America on a shoestring budget or with a scholarship. With the escalating cost of medical care, student insurance becomes quite imperative. Very few will be able to afford the unexpected expenses if they are not supported by adequate medical coverage. Many states require by law that foreign students be covered under medical insurance. Some states set even the minimum amount that should be available to the student for medical treatment, emergency evacuation and repatriation of remains. For example, in California the values are $50,000 for illness and $7,500 for repatriation. Waivers are allowed only when the US Government or other foreign government sponsors students whose health insurance exceeds that of the University’s standard.
The cost of international student medical insurance is in the range of $600 -700 per annum. Most of the universities sponsoring students subsidize the cost of insurance coverage to the students with cheap medical care through Gannett. Universities fund Gannett up to 60% of the costs. Only 40% is charged to the insurance companies. Students who are also teaching and doing research work are helped by the University in meeting their insurance costs.
Besides the regular students, visiting scholars are also required by visa requirements to have themselves covered by appropriate medical insurance plans. A short-term cost is in the range of 100-200 dollars. By US visa requirements, any dependants accompanying the students also need to be insured towards medical costs.