Medical Insurance - International Students

International Students Health Insurance Information for both the Utica and Albany Campuses

SUNY Poly Health & Counseling Services:

  • Utica Campus: Wellness Center: Health & Counseling Services
  • Albany Campus: Health Services: Suite 200, 518-442-5454
    • Counseling & Psychological Services: Suite 104, 518-442-5800
    • 400 Patroon Creek Blvd, Albany, NY 12206

All International students, usually on F-1 or J-1 visas, who attend any SUNY institution are mandated to purchase the International Student Health Insurance provided by SUNY Administration. If you are a graduate assistant and working as an SUNY Poly employee with the Human Resource Department you may opt to purchase the employee health insurance. 
As seen on your tuition bill there are two different fees that provide two different services: health service fee and medical insurance fee.

Please DO NOT confuse the health service fee with the medical insurance fee.

Health Service Fee - ALL students, (full-time, part-time, domestic and international) pay the health service fee for Health & Counseling Services provided by SUNY Poly.

The health service fee covers services provided by SUNY Poly. There usually is no charge or a possible minimal charge dependent on services provided.

Medical Insurance Fee - As mandated by SUNY Administration, this fee provides a comprehensive medical insurance policy for international students and allows the student access to health care in the community and across the globe. This includes health care services such as facilities (hospitals, emergency rooms, urgent care clinics, etc.), medical specialists (dermatologists, surgeons, etc.), healthcare services (i.e. x-ray, laboratory, etc.), etc.

NOTE: F-1 students who are Teaching Assistant (TA), Graduate Assistants (GA), or Research Assistants (RA) may enroll in NYSHIP or POMCO insurance at the beginning of the semester. If you qualify, you must enroll with the Human Resources Benefits department. Once you have used international health insurance, the coverage cannot be waived or cancelled for the entire semester.

You must still pay for Medical Evacuation and Repatriation insurance. This covers sending a very sick or deceased student back to their home country. However you must pay your tuition and other charges including International health insurance before it’s due to avoid late payment fee otherwise you are responsible for any late fees incurred. Once you are enrolled with HR Benefits, we will be notified by HR. The paid insurance fee will be credited back to your account after October 15 for fall and February 15 for spring semester. No waiver application is needed. If you use the UnitedHealthcare insurance the coverage cannot be terminated.

Student Medical Insurance

In the United States we have an excellent healthcare system, however it is complex and may be confusing.

Some basic information when using your student medical insurance:

  • Visit the Health & Counseling Services provided by SUNY Poly first: It is suggested to obtain health care services for non-emergent services (i.e. respiratory illnesses, coughs, rashes, minor skin cuts/abrasions, strain/sprains, etc.) PRIOR to seeking health care services in the community. The staff are very knowledgeable about community resources and can refer you to appropriate and reputable health care providers in the community if necessary.
    • Please note: Students are responsible to pay at least the first $50. IF you choose to seek health care services in the community without a referral from the SUNY Poly Health & Counseling Services.
    • If you have an emergency situation (i.e. breathing difficulties, severe bleeding, chest pain, etc.) seek immediate attention. Once your health status is stable, inform the Health & Counseling Services of your emergency situation for a possible removal of the $50 deductible.

  • Have your insurance Identification (ID) card with you at all times: You must have an insurance ID card to receive health care services. To obtain your ID card and have access to all your health insurance policy information (benefits, participating providers, claims/payment, etc.) you MUST set up an account with the insurance company. To create or login to your student account, please visit
    • Your insurance card is “key” to accessing health care and you should have it available at all times. Insurance ID card = Health care services.
    • Please note:
      • You may set up your account with the insurance company after the Bursar’s Office submits your name to the insurance company. This usually occurs the first few weeks of the semester. An e-mail will be sent from the insurance company to your e-mail address informing you that you have been enrolled and now have access to your health insurance information. By following the directions in the e-mail, you can then set up your account and receive your ID card and other insurance information.
      • The Health & Counseling Services provided by SUNY Poly do not bill your health insurance company for services provided at these Centers, however you should have your insurance ID card available as it may be needed for off campus laboratory services (blood work, x-rays, referrals, etc.)
  • Pay less money out of pocket if you follow the insurance policy “rules”:
    • Visit the Health & Counseling Services provided by SUNY Poly first for non-emergent health care. If a referral is required for additional healthcare services, the $50. deductible may be waived.
    • Identify a participating community healthcare provider on the website prior to obtaining health care services: Obtaining health or counseling health care services by a participating provider will cost you less than a non-participating health care provider.

Questions regarding enrollment and billing:, 315-792-7214

Questions regarding policy benefits and claims: 315-792-7172




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