Due to high cost of treatment, universities and colleges in countries like the US, Canada, Australia etc. have made it mandatory for students to have a health insurance in order to study in those countries. This is done to ensure that a student gets requisite treatment if he or she falls ill as well as to ensure that the student doesn’t default on medical bill payment obligation.

Most universities and colleges in the US, Canada or Australia offer to students a health insurance plan which they provide in association with a local health insurance company. However, their coverage is limited to bearing the cost of treatment due to sickness or injury.

In this blog, Student Cover brings to you those benefits that student health insurance plans do not provide and suggest options for getting coverage against those eventualities.

1. Vision and Dental Care benefits

Vision and dental coverage in case of most university health plans is limited to medical expenses incurred in treatment of eye or tooth due to injury or accident. They do not include treatment and procedures for keeping those vital organs in good shape. So, if a student requires dental or eye treatment for reason other than injury, they are not covered.
In order to get coverage for eye and dental care, a student can opt for supplementary insurance which would provide the required coverage. Most university plans do offer supplementary plans for vision and dental care to students. Students can also purchase such supplementary plans from Healthcare marketplace (Please refer to the related blog – What is the healthcare marketplace in the US?).

2. Travel insurance benefits

While the university sponsored student health insurance plans cover medical expenses due to sickness or injury, they do not include coverage for loss of checked-in luggage, flight delay and several other instances related to travel. In some cases, the health cover offered by university sponsored plans is limited to the political boundary of that country only. If a student is traveling, he or she may have to purchase an additional travel insurance to keep him or her covered against any eventuality associated with travel.

3. Sponsor Protection benefits

A large number of students either take student loan (education loan) to meet the cost of higher education abroad or are sponsored by their parents or relatives. In case of a sponsored student, the death of the sponsor due to accident or injury may affect the student’s education as he or she may not be able to pay the fees. This is not taken into consideration by university sponsored plans.

Students, especially in India, can purchase overseas health insurance plans offered by several health insurance providers that compensate students in case of death of the sponsor. The compensation amount can be as high as $ 10,000. This would help student meet his or her fee payment obligation.

4. Compensation for study interruption

It may so happen that due to sickness or injury, a student may not be able to attend class for a semester. That could lead to the student having to repeat the entire semester. This would mean having to repay the entire fees. The student health insurance plans offered by universities and colleges cover cost of treatment but do provide cover against unwanted consequences of those incidents such as study interruption. Therefore, to prevent the student from suffering mental and financial hardship due to study interruption, several Indian health insurance companies have come up with overseas health plans that provide compensation for study interruption.

5. Compassionate visit benefits

There might be an instance when the parent of the student studying abroad might get very sick or vice versa. In such a scenario, the cost of travel, for students in case any parent fall ill or the cost of travel for parents if the student falls ill might be very high. University and college sponsored health insurance plans do not provide cover for the expenses incurred on such travel.

However, there are plans, especially those offered by several Indian health insurance companies that have the provision for 2-way compassionate visit. These plans bear the cost of flight ticket for the student to visit to his or her home country if one of the parents is hospitalized for a period of 7 days or more. In case the student is unwell and is admitted for a period of 7 or more days, it covers the cost of overseas travel of one of the parents to meet the student.

Let’s Wrap up!

University and college sponsored plans are meant to provide cover for student in case of sickness or injury. They do not provide cover against certain other types of emergencies that a student may face. They include, loss of checked-in baggage while traveling, non-injury related vision and dental problems, death of the sponsor, study interruption etc. Students can stay protected against such scenarios by purchasing overseas health plans offered by Indian insurance companies. To know more about such plans, readers can contact Student Cover at info@studentcover.in or call us at +91-9650836644.

Disclaimer: The content of this blog is based on personal research of the writer. Readers’ discretion is advised. Neither Student Cover nor the writer will be held liable for any wrongful interpretation of the content of this blog.

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