Archive for February, 2012

Insurance rates would likely decrease

By Kirk Jackson

The high cost of health insurance is a problem troubling a large amount of the population across this country.

For many college students, the additional costs of health insurance is a burden because of high tuition costs, expensive books and overall living expenses.

The University of Nevada offers student health insurance coverage to students enrolled in 9 or more credit hours for each semester.

This is a major medical insurance plan, specifically designed for students.

University of Nevada, Reno Student Health Insurance Coordinator Julee DeMello reviews a student health insurance brochure. DeMello believes high deductibles and high premiums make it impossibile for students to afford health insurance.

“Unr does not have a policy requiring students to have health insurance through the university, but what we do is we provide an option for students.” said Business Manager Coordinator of Health Resources, Julee DeMello.

For undergrad students, the health insurance cost annually is $2,349 dollars. Broken down by semester, the cost is $1,028 dollars for the fall semester, $1,369 dollars for the spring semester and $ 452 dollars for the summer semester.

As a graduate student, the rates aren’t as expensive in comparison, but still a bit pricey. $1,433 dollars is the total fee due annually, while broken down by semester, the health insurance fee for fall semester is $627 dollars, for spring semester the fee is $834, and for the summer semester the fee is $276 dollars.

More detailed information can be found on this web page:

http://www.unr.edu/shc/files/grad.undergrad.int%20brochure.pdf

Some universities require a policy making it mandatory for enrolling students to be covered with health insurance through the school.

“All the UC system schools have to have insurance.” DeMello said.

Unr does not make it mandatory for students to require health insurance as opposed to other universities such as UC Davis, which may explain a difference of insurance costs.

“If you look at them on paper, if you pulled up UC Davis or UC Santa Barbara, their plan would probably look like it’s cheaper than ours because it’s mandatory that they purchase it, they have a lot more people enrolled on the plan than we do.” DeMello said.

“I think if you mandated insurance for the students on our campus and either have them purchase this insurance or have them show proof they have some other insurance it would make our rates go down as well.”

In regards to potentially getting health insurance mandated, the first step may be for the students to get informed about the insurance policies, so that there is a clear consensus on what to fight for. Some students, such as pre nursing major Daisy Alcala, are not familiar with Unr’s health insurance policies.

“I have heard about it, but I don’t know too much about it,” Alcala said.

“None of the school websites I been to, showed any kind of advertisements of the health care insurance policies. Workshops should be held throughout the year promoting awareness and health care through the school.”

Alcala however, is in agreement with the majority of students on campus.

“$2,349 (annually) is too expensive,” Alcala said.

If making health insurance a mandatory requirement for students in effect to lower insurance rates was an option, the possibility of that occurrence won’t be available until the conclusion of the health reform dilemma.

“If student health center plans end up falling under the health care reform, it can raise the rates quite a bit.” DeMello said.

“It can be a 5 % increase, or it can be 20%.”

For the overall well-being of students, it may be beneficial for there to be some sort of affordable health insurance because of safety reasons and it may cheapen the fees for everyone. But it isn’t a guaranteed hit.

“I think that it should not just be mandatory but you should be able to waive out of it if you have your own insurance. A lot of insurance nowadays have really high deductibles and really high premiums and it’s almost impossible for a student to afford the insurance or deductible.” DeMello said.

“A really large medical bill can keep a student out of school for a semester or 2 because of having to pay off the bill.”

The high cost of health insurance is a problem troubling a large amount people across this country.

For many college students, the burden is even more ominous because of high tuition costs, expensive books and overall living expenses.

The University of Nevada does offer student health insurance plan to all students who are enrolled in 9 or more credit hours for each semester. This is a major medical insurance plan, specifically designed for students.

“Unr does not have a policy requiring students to have health insurance through the university, but what we do is we provide an option for students.” said Business Manager Coordinator of Health Resources, Julee DeMello.

For undergrad students, the health insurance cost annually is $2,349 dollars. Broken down by semester, the cost is $1,028 dollars for the fall semester, $1,369 dollars for the spring semester and $452 dollars for the summer semester.

As a graduate student, the rates aren’t as expensive in comparison, but still a bit pricey. $1,433 dollars is the total fee due annually, while broken down by semester, the health insurance fee for fall semester is $627 dollars, for spring semester the fee is $834, and for the summer semester the fee is $276 dollars.

More detailed information can be found on this web page:

http://www.unr.edu/shc/files/grad.undergrad.int%20brochure.pdf

Some universities require a policy making it mandatory for enrolling students to be covered with health insurance through the school.

“All the UC system schools have to have insurance.” DeMello said.

At Unr, health insurance is not mandatory for students to have as opposed to other universities such as UC Davis; which may explain a difference of insurance costs.

“If you look at them on paper, if you pulled up UC Davis or UC Santa Barbara, their plan would probably look like it’s cheaper than ours because it’s mandatory that they purchase it, they have a lot more people enrolled on the plan than we do.” DeMello said.

“I think if you mandated insurance for the students on our campus and either have them purchase this insurance or have them show proof they have some other insurance it would make our rates go down as well.”

In regards to potentially getting health insurance mandated, the first step may be for the students to get informed about the insurance policies, to gain clear consensus on what to fight for. Some students, such as pre-nursing major Daisy Alcala, are not familiar with Unr’s health insurance policies.

“I have heard about it, but I don’t know too much about it,” Alcala said.

“None of the school websites I been to, showed any kind of advertisements of the health care insurance policies. Workshops should be held throughout the year promoting awareness and health care through the school.”

Alcala however, is in agreement with the majority of students on campus.

“$2,349 (annually) is too expensive,” Alcala said.

If health insurance is a mandatory requirement for students and lowering insurance rates was an option, the possibility of that occurrence won’t be available until the conclusion of the health reform dilemma.

“If student health center plans end up falling under the health care reform, it can raise the rates quite a bit.” DeMello said.

“It can be a 5% increase, or it can be 20%.”

For the overall well-being of students, it may be beneficial for there to be some sort of affordable health insurance because of safety reasons and it may cheapen the fees for everyone. But it isn’t a guaranteed hit.

“I think that it should not just be mandatory but you should be able to waive out of it if you have your own insurance. A lot of insurance nowadays have really high deductibles and really high premiums and it’s almost impossible for a student to afford the insurance or deductible.” DeMello said.

“A really large medical bill can keep a student out of school for a semester or two because of having to pay off the bill.”

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