If you are heading off to college, in addition to registering for the right classes and finding a place to live, you are going to want to make sure you also have health insurance. As a student heading off to college after finishing high school, there are a few health insurance options for you, based on your circumstances.
Option #1: Family Health Insurance
If your parent's health insurance plan currently covers you, you can choose to stay on their plan. One of the features of the Affordable Care Act was a provision that allows children to remain on their parent's insurance until their 26th birthday. This feature will give you plenty of time to complete college and get a job before you need to pay for your own healthcare coverage.
If you choose to stay on your parent's plan, be sure to do your research. You may have different co-pays and deductibles. If you are going to college outside of the state where your parents reside, you may have limited healthcare provider options where you are attending college. Make sure your parent's plan will still cover your needs.
Option #2: College Health Insurance
Many colleges recognize that not all students can stay on a parent's health plan, or even have a parent with a health insurance plan. To keep students healthy and ensure they get the health care assistance they need, many colleges offer health insurance plans. These plans usually have affordable premiums, depending on the college.
College healthcare plans generally offer a lower yearly coverage limit than individual plans, but more than adequate coverage for most college students. They should also cover preventative care, mental health care, and prescription drug benefits.
Option #3: Individual Health Insurance
Finally, you can also sign up for an individual health care plan. You can shop the insurance marketplace during open enrollment for an insurance plan. If you are a lower-income, which is common when you are a student, you could qualify for a substitute, which will lower your monthly premium, making having health insurance much more affordable. You can also choose a high deductible plan designed for younger individuals which will usually provide you with lower premiums.
If you are heading off to college, you will want to make sure you have health care coverage, either through an individual health insurance plan, a college health insurance plan, or through your parent's health insurance plan. For more information about a health insurance plan, contact a local insurance provider.