Health Insurance and my College Student

| September 19, 2019

Is your dependent student attending college outside your coverage area?  Be sure to contact your carrier or agent for specific instructions on what is needed to extend coverage to your student. Here’s 6 things to consider. 

  1. If your coverage area is NJ, and your student attends school in NJ, your plan should provide coverage as it allows access to local, in-state providers. Check with your agent or carrier to be sure your dependent student is covered.
  2. Every family member under your plan should download your carrier’s app to their Android or iPhone smartphone to make it easier to find local providers.
  3. Some carriers, like Blue Cross, offer an “Away from Home” option for students that allow your student to apply for a separate policy from the same carrier that would provide access to providers in the student’s new locale.  Amerihealth offers a “Guest Advantage” plan that extends coverage temporarily outside the regular NJ service area. If your plan currently includes a national network, you may not have to apply for this special coverage.
  4. Check out the school’s student insurance plan. Be watchful for coverage limitations, access to providers and hidden fees.
  5. If you are covered as part of the Affordable Care Act, be aware that these plans limit coverage to the resident state.
  6. Emergency room visits are covered in a true emergency only. If the illness or injury is not life-threatening, coverage will not apply.  The illness or injury needs to be considered “emergent” so things such as sore throats or colds will not be covered.  Some plans allow you to call the toll-free member service line for authorization to use a local Urgent Care center.  Urgent cares are not by definition emergency rooms so they will not be covered out of network without prior approval.

If you need help figuring this all out, please reach out to us. Our health insurance specialists work with families every day to manage their health insurance needs and can offer guidance for all situations.