Is health insurance for international students necessary or simply nice to have? Here are three factors to consider in your decision to get one today.
It is part of the visa or university requirements
Aside from the rigorous visa application process, visa offices may also require a student to obtain health insurance.
Depending on your home country and type of visa or permit, you may be required to present a health insurance plan before your visa can be approved.
Many institutions abroad also require students to get their own health insurance. For example, in Canada, the government does not pay for the medical expenses of international students.
For countries that offer health or medical assistance to international students, getting health insurance is definitely necessary.
Once you obtain your health insurance, you need to present it during the application process, either as a visa requirement, school requirement, or both. Depending on your respective school, you may be required to get health insurance based on the coverage and benefits, although this is a rare instance.
Your health insurance in your home country may not cover you abroad
If you already have health insurance in your home country, contact the insurance company and inquire about the coverage.
Some health insurance may still cover you even when you’re outside your home country. Other providers may only grant you benefits if you’re inside your country.
It’s important to learn about your current coverage first before getting another one. If your regular health insurance still covers you even when you’re overseas, then you wouldn’t have to worry. If you’re still covered, asked about the duration of your insurance. You want to make sure that the period of your insurance is long enough to cover the days while you’re in school.
If you’re not covered outside of your home country, find another health insurance plan that will. A lot of health insurance plans are offered to students at a discounted price.
In some cases, the health insurance plan may already be included as part of your application processing fee to a university. It’s necessary that you check this first; otherwise, you might end up spending more money on health insurance, even though you already have one.
In case you’re wondering, health insurance typically covers inpatient care and laboratory costs, medicines while you’re hospitalized, outpatient consultation, physical therapy, dental services, and mental health treatments, to name a few. It’s important to ask what the plan covers.
It helps you access proper medical care and avoid out-of-pocket medical expenses
The most fundamental reason why you should get health insurance as an international student is medical security.
You can’t predict what might happen to you while studying abroad. You may be energetic and healthy one day, then just suddenly pass out from exhaustion or get injured the next.
The change in environment may also affect your physical and mental well-being. So as much as possible, you need to have access to immediate and proper care to attend to your medical needs.
Most health insurance offered to international students is accepted by many medical providers worldwide. At a time of a medical emergency, you can use your health insurance to partially or completely cover your medical bills. This makes living abroad more manageable and gives you and your family the peace of mind that you’ll receive the care that you need away from home.
Health insurance is one of the most vital requirements for international students. Check out our other articles here on MSM Unify to learn more about health insurance when studying abroad.