Enhanced health insurance

New health insurance policy for students, postdoctoral fellows

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3:10 p.m., June 4, 2012--The University of Delaware Office of Graduate and Professional Education has announced a new, enhanced health insurance policy that will be available to UD students and postdoctoral fellows effective fall 2012. The new Student Health Insurance Policy replaces the current Student Accident and Sickness Policy.

“This new policy offers expanded health insurance benefits for our graduate students and postdoctoral fellows, who make significant contributions to the University community through their creativity and innovation, teaching and service, and their critical role in the development of new knowledge,” said Charlie Riordan, vice provost for graduate and professional education. 

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“Although there is a modest increase in premiums, the out-of-pocket costs for preventative care and well screenings will decrease as these are covered in the new plan,” noted Riordan, who acknowledged the efforts of Gary Stokes, director of the Office of Risk Management, in negotiating the new policy with University Health Plans Inc. Graduate Student Government (GSG) also was involved in the policy review and discussion. 

“Overwhelmingly, the Graduate Student Government was very pleased with the changes to the health insurance policy due to the additional benefits that we will gain from the new plans, such as increased benefit limits and no deductibles for preventative care,” said GSG President Emily Bonistall. “We appreciate the University administration working so diligently to provide us with the best health care options possible, and I believe the new plans are a large step in that direction.”

For Blue Plan members, the annual premium for the student only will adjust from the current rate of $1,504 to $1,843; for the student and one dependent, from $3,776 to $4,630; and for the student and two or more dependents, from $5,521 to $6,770. 

For Blue and Gold Plan members, the annual premium for the student only will adjust from the current rate of $1,820 to $2,062; for the student and one dependent, from $4,981 to $5,181; and for the student and two or more dependents, from $7,341 to $7,577.

The new Student Health Insurance Policy includes the following enhancements:

  • The cap for the Blue Plan increases from $50,000 per condition as a lifetime maximum to $100,000 per condition per policy year. 
  • The cap for the Blue and Gold Plan remains at $1,000,000, but is changing from a per condition lifetime, to a per condition per policy year.
  • Preventative care, including routine exams and checkups, is now included with no co-pay.
  • Wellness screenings (mammogram, cytology, colorectal, prostate) are now covered with no co-pay.
  • The benefit limit for prescription drugs increases to $100,000.
  • Benefit limits for immunizations, physical therapy, and mental and nervous disorders are expanded.
  • New coverage is added for learning disabilities or disorders, immunizations and allergy tests, and expenses for heart, heart-lung, liver and pancreas transplants.

Graduate students on contract will continue to receive a subsidy toward their premium at the same percentage rate as prior years. 

Also, graduate students will continue to have the same access to Student Health Services and continue to pay the health center fee. Dependents can use their health insurance coverage for services on campus at the Nurse Managed Health Center (NMHC) at 119 McDowell Hall, or via an off-campus provider.

A detailed overview of the policy, plans and benefits will be available on the Student Health website this summer. Students and postdoctoral fellows may begin applying for the new 2012-13 insurance during the fall enrollment period.

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