News

May 7, 2013

New Policy on Health Insurance for Students Takes Effect This Fall

The Affordable Care Act requires all individuals to be covered by health insurance effective Jan. 1, 2014.

Starting this fall, in anticipation of the act’s requirement, to ensure that all Lafayette students have access to comprehensive medical care, all students will be automatically enrolled in the Student Health Insurance Plan, or SHIP, serviced by University Health Plans, for the coverage period Aug. 1, 2013, to Aug. 1, 2014.

This enrollment will result in an automatic premium charge of $1,522 to each student’s account. This charge will be removed from a student’s account only if the student waives the enrollment before the waiver deadline of Aug. 1, 2013.

Students may waive the coverage only if they are enrolled in a comparable domestic insurance plan. Guidelines for waiving enrollment in SHIP are found at the University Health Plans website, www.universityhealthplans.com. Also found on the site is information about SHIP’s preferred providers and pharmacies, advice on questions to ask a current insurer before waiving enrollment in SHIP, and Frequently Asked Questions.

Students and families were informed of the new policy by email, with additional communications to students and families to follow.

* * *

Below is the message sent to students by Jeffrey Goldstein, director of health services, May 2. The message also was sent to parents by Donna Krivoski, director of parent relations, via the POINT (Parent Office Info, News & Tips) electronic newsletter. For information on receiving the POINT newsletter, email krivoskd@lafayette.edu.

The Affordable Care Act requires all individuals to be covered by health insurance effective Jan. 1, 2014. Starting this fall, in anticipation of the Act’s requirement, to ensure that all students have access to comprehensive medical care while attending Lafayette College, all students will be automatically enrolled in the Student Health Insurance Plan (“SHIP”) serviced by University Health Plans for the Aug. 1, 2013, to Aug. 1, 2014, coverage period. This enrollment will result in an automatic premium charge of $1,522 to each student’s account. This charge will only be removed from a student’s account if the student waives the enrollment as described below in Section III before the Aug. 1, 2013, deadline.

I. Students and parents should promptly access www.universityhealthplans.com to:

  • Learn more about the SHIP;
  • Locate the SHIP preferred providers or pharmacies;
  • Review questions to ask your current insurer before waiving enrollment in the SHIP; and
  • Read the downloadable brochure of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).

After this review is complete, and IF you are convinced that your current plan is sufficient, you may elect to waive enrollment in the SHIP to remove the charge from the student’s Lafayette College account.

II. If you are considering waiving enrollment in the SHIP, please verify the following with your current health insurance coverage in order to avoid incurring substantial out-of-pocket costs for medical care:

  • You are covered by a domestic plan which is NOT a Medicaid Plan located outside of Pennsylvania
  • Your plan should not restrict the coverage area to your primary residence area
  • Your plan provides adequate coverage accessible in the Easton, Pa., area for
  1. Lab tests
  2. X-rays, MRIs, and other imaging
  3. Prescription drugs
  4. Outpatient hospital services
  5. Mental Health care
  6. Emergency Room care
  7. Hospitalization (including facility fees, physician fees, and surgical expenses)
  • Your plan provides coverage through Aug. 1, 2014
  • Your plan does not have a high deductible that must be met before accessing your coverage

III. Students may waive the coverage only if they are enrolled in a comparable domestic insurance plan.  If you choose to waive enrollment in the SHIP, access the Lafayette College link found at www.universityhealthplans.com, provide proof of comparable coverage, and submit the on-line waiver form by the waiver deadline of Aug. 1, 2013. Once enrollment is waived, you may only enroll in the SHIP at a later date during the year if your existing coverage ceases due to a qualifying event (e.g. change in the subscriber’s employment status, change in marital status, or reaching the age limit on the policy).

Please closely evaluate your coverage to make an informed decision regarding health insurance needs while enrolled at Lafayette College. As mentioned above, the charge for the SHIP premium of $1,522 will be automatically added to each Lafayette student’s account and will only be removed if you affirmatively waive enrollment by Aug. 1, 2013. Additional questions regarding the SHIP, including the cost of the plan, can be directed to University Health Plans at 800-437-6448 or at www.universityhealthplans.com. Thank you.

posted in News and Features, Parents & Families, Students

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