College is a time of great change and opportunity. It is also a time when many students are first exposed to the healthcare system. Unfortunately, college students are also a population group that is often uninsured or underinsured. This is because they may not have access to employer-sponsored health insurance, and they may not be able to afford to purchase health insurance on their own.
If you are a college student and you do not have health insurance, you are at risk for financial hardship if you become sick or injured. You may also have to delay or forgo needed medical care.
There are a number of resources available to help college students get health insurance. These resources include:
- The Affordable Care Act (ACA): The ACA provides subsidies to help low- and middle-income individuals and families purchase health insurance. You can use the ACA website to find out if you qualify for subsidies and to compare health insurance plans.
- State health exchanges: State health exchanges are websites that allow individuals and families to shop for and purchase health insurance. You can use your state's health exchange to find out about health insurance plans that are available in your area.
- College health centers: Many college health centers offer health insurance plans to students. These plans typically have lower premiums than plans that are available through the ACA or state health exchanges.
- Scholarships and grants: There are a number of scholarships and grants available to help college students pay for health insurance. You can search for scholarships and grants online or through your college financial aid office.
If you are a college student and you need help getting health insurance, there are a number of resources available to you. You can contact your college health center, your state health exchange, or the ACA website for more information.
Here are some additional tips for getting health insurance as a college student:
- Start planning early. The open enrollment period for the ACA and state health exchanges typically begins in November and ends in December. If you wait until the last minute, you may not be able to get the coverage you need.
- Shop around. There are a number of different health insurance plans available, so it is important to shop around and compare plans before you choose one. You can use the ACA website or your state health exchange to compare plans.
- Consider your needs. When you are choosing a health insurance plan, it is important to consider your needs. If you have a chronic condition, you will need a plan that has good coverage for that condition.
- Read the fine print. Before you sign up for a health insurance plan, be sure to read the fine print and understand all of the terms and conditions. This will help you avoid any surprises later on.
Getting health insurance is important for all college students, regardless of their income or health status. By following these tips, you can find a health insurance plan that meets your needs and budget.