Introduction

All students should refer to the information below to determine if their medical insurance coverage is sufficient. Be aware that since many program sponsors include some type of insurance coverage for the duration of the program, you may wish to communicate with your program sponsor directly about the details of the coverage. In some cases, program sponsors may be able to extend the dates of coverage beyond the dates of the program for you for a minimal fee.

Specific questions regarding medical insurance should be directed to your primary insurance provider or program sponsor, where applicable.

The ISIC & Claremont Colleges' Insurance

All students on both Approved Programs and Programs by Petition will receive the International Student Identity Card (ISIC) either from the OSA or their program sponsor. Please note that the insurance included in the ISIC is supplemental only and students must maintain a primary insurance plan that meets the required amounts of medical and accident coverage equal to or better than the Pomona College Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP). While the amounts of coverage in The Claremont Colleges' plan are used as a guideline, please note that The Claremont Colleges Student Accident and Sickness Medical Expense Insurance Plan is not specifically designed for study abroad students.  Students may find that, while they are abroad, another policy designed for study abroad students will more adequately meet their primary health needs.

AIG Worldwide Emergency Travel Assistance

Students on both Approved Programs and Programs by Petition are also covered by AIG travel insurance [pdf] which provides worldwide travel assistance, personal security services, medical assistance, and emergency travel assistance.

More on the ISIC

The ISIC provides limited insurance, travel discounts and other benefits. Learn more with this given summary of the ISIC insurance coverage and benefits.

The OSA will purchase an ISIC card for you at the Basic travel insurance level. If you wish to upgrade your card to the Premium level to include additional travelers insurance, there will be an additional cost to you, the student. Find more information about the different card plan levels. You will receive an email with instructions to upload your photo once the card has been registered by our office. Please be sure to make upgrade requests prior to the validity date of your card. When the photo has been uploaded, the ISIC will be generated and sent to your home address. If you have an international address the card will be mailed to the Office of Study Abroad and we will notify you for pick up.

Students on the following programs will receive ISIC directly from their program provider:

AKP (Associated Kyoto Program)
Kathmandu (Pitzer College)
Florence (Syracuse)
Hong Kong (Syracuse)
Athens (CYA)

Does your program sponsor provide insurance? Is it sufficient?

Your study abroad program may include a mandatory health insurance plan in the program fee. If insurance is included with your program, please contact your program sponsor directly to find out more information about the specific plan in order to determine if coverage is sufficient for your own individual needs. Keep in mind that the policy may be restricted to the dates of your academic program. Remember to inquire about this if you plan to travel prior to or following your program.

Programs by Petition participants should refer to their program materials to determine whether their program provides coverage.

I need additional health insurance-- how do I find a plan?

There are a couple of resources we recommend for information on international health insurance. The International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers has a Guide to Travel Health Insurance. The U.S. Department of State has information on Insurance Providers for Overseas Coverage.

Questions you should ask insurance providers:

  1. Does the plan cover visits to the doctor or medication prescribed while abroad?
  2. Does the plan include hospitalization coverage for accidents and illnesses while abroad?
  3. What is the maximum amount of coverage that is provided?
  4. Are there deductibles? If so, what are they?
  5. Will the plan include Emergency Room expenses?
  6. What is the coverage for medical evacuation?
  7. In the event of death, what is the coverage for repatriation?
  8. What do you do under the plan if you have to pay cash up front and have no money?
  9. Does the plan enable you to have continuous coverage before, during, and after you go abroad?
  10. Does the plan cover expenses incurred in the U.S. (or home country) should you need to return for treatment? If so, what is the maximum amount of coverage provided?
  11. What are the procedures for filing a claim? How long does it take for reimbursement?
  12. When does the plan begin and end?
  13. Does the plan assume it is the primary or secondary carrier? If it is the secondary carrier, when does coverage begin? How much does the primary carrier have to pay before the secondary carrier assumes coverage?
  14. Is there a booklet explaining the coverage in detail?

Other things you need to know about the plan you select:

  1. What is the process for enrolling?
  2. If you find it necessary to use your insurance, what do you show as proof of worldwide coverage?
  3. If you obtain medical assistance while abroad, when and how should you inform the agency?
  4. What documentation of expenses is required? Does the bill need to be in English and the amount of the charges in U.S. dollars?