Because all medical and dental treatment in the USA is private and very expensive, it is very important that everyone has insurance. Winthrop University requires all international students, and their dependents, to maintain health insurance. All major universities have a similar requirement. The Winthrop University Student Health Insurance Plan (“Health Plan”) insures the student against major expenses accompanying an accident, illness or hospitalization.
The Health Plan is administered by Pearce and Pearce, Inc. This company specializes in health plans for students and is the largest provider of student health insurance in the Southeast. International students will be charged for their insurance twice a year, along with their tuition, housing and other expenses, and will pay directly to Winthrop’s cashier or on-line, as with the other University expenses. Students should be prepared to pay for their health insurance by the first day of classes.
The cost for Fall 2012 is as follows:
- Fall (8/15/2012-1/05/2013) is $648
- Spring/Summer (1/06/2013-8/14/2013) is $951
- Annual (08/15/2012-08/14/2013 (if you choose) is $1,599
For Fall 2012 the following date has been set by Pearce and Pearce for waiver requests, open and voluntary enrollment in student health insurance:
- The waiver process will end on September 14, 2012;
- Open enrollment will end on September 14, 2012;
- Voluntary enrollment will end on September 14, 2012.
The Health Plan is most effective when the student goes first to Winthrop’s Health Services in Crawford Hall. Health Services usually can provide the necessary treatment or service for free, but if they can not they will refer you to a local doctor or dentist, and assist you with transportation to that specialist. When you go to the doctor or dentist your insurance will help you to cover the cost of that visit. For full benefits of the Health Plan you must be referred by Health Services except you can go directly to an off-campus clinic or emergency room:
- For a medical emergency go directly and immediately to the closest Emergency Room or Urgent Care Provider. The preferred Urgent Care Provider is Riverview Medical Center ("Riverview") at 1393 Celanese Road, Rock Hill, SC.
- If Health Services is closed (weekend, holiday or evening) and a serious illness or injury requires immediate treatment, go directly to Riverview.
- If you are more than 35 miles from campus and need immediate attention go to a local Urgent Care Provider.
- Dependents (spouses and children) that are not eligible for care at the University’s Health Services can go directly to Riverview.
VERY IMPORTANT: If you do seek medical care on the weekends or when Health Services is not open you must provide Health Services with information on the medical treatment you received off-campus as soon as possible in order to file a claim with Pearce and Pearce, Inc.
Winthrop University Health Insurance Plan Highlights-
- Winthrop’s Health Services offers office visits at no charge. Some laboratory or medical supplies/procedures will incur a minimal fee. All charges are billed to the student’s Winthrop University account.
- A Wellness Benefit of up to $300 per policy year allows for health preventative services including vaccines and yearly physicals with no deductible.
- There is an annual deductible of $350 per person (higher if dependents are covered) for health care provided outside of Health Services. If you require care outside of Health Services, your insurance will pay 80% of any medicine prescribed through Health Services up to a maximum of $1,000 per year.
- The Travel Assistance plan covers you all over the world as long as you are a student. This would include expenses required to travel home for treatment, or even expenses for a parent to travel here if you are seriously ill or injured. The Health Plan will cover sickness and injury while traveling anywhere in the world. The only difference is that the student may have to pay upfront and submit bills to the insurance company for reimbursement.
- You will receive a full description of the Health Plan and questions can be directed to Winthrop’s Health Services.
Students are required to verify their insurance requirement with the International Center at the beginning of each fall and spring semester. We hold information sessions on health insurance at the beginning of each semester for those interested in plan updates.
Many students may have their own health insurance. Listed below are the minimum required benefits that your personal insurance policy must meet in order to waive the Winthrop University policy. If you have your own insurance it then becomes your responsibility to provide health insurance information to Pearce and Pearce for verification of insurance. By submitting your name, the name of your insurance provider, their address and telephone number along with your individual policy number, your insurance coverage will be verified. Once the coverage amount is verified and waived by Pearce and Pearce you will not be charged for the Pearce and Pearce policy. Your waiver must be applied for and approved by the waiver and enrollment deadline set each semester by Pearce and Pearce. Not applying for or receiving a waiver in a timely manner will result in the charge for the Pearce and Pearce insurance being placed on your student account.
Minimum Required Health Insurance Benefits:
- Maximum Lifetime Benefits (Amount of Coverage) - $500,000
- Maximum Benefit per illness or injury - $100,000
- Wellness benefit, $300 per year, no deductible at Student Health Center.
- Effective and Termination Dates – Must cover the semester academic dates with no lapse in coverage.
- Limit Emergency Room visit is $500 if not admitted. Urgent Care facility visit paid as MD visit.
- Deductible $350 in-network/ $500 out-of-network, limit 3 per family.
- Dental benefit is $100 per year
- Dependant maximum, $50,000 per injury or illness.
- Medical Evacuation & Repatriation (combined maximum benefit) - $1,000,000.
- Prescriptions subject to $100 deductible.
- Pre-Existing conditions not covered for the first 12 months. (see policy for exceptions)
- Geographical Limitation – No restrictions to accessing health care services in South Carolina, domestic or international locations.
For more information on the Health Insurance requirement for all international students please the International Center.