Letter to the Editor

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A new mandatory health insurance requirement requires students to maintain insurance coverage as a condition of their enrollment at SMU. The requirement is based, in part, on a 2004 survey that included eight other Texas universities and showed that 26.5% of SMU students reported they did not have health insurance. Many other universities already have instituted this requirement.

As of November 2, 2009, SMU’s mandatory health insurance policy requires students to provide documentation of insurance coverage or to enroll in the Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP). The new policy applies to all domestic students enrolling for nine or more credit hours and all international students regardless of the number of credit hours. The online waiver option ended Monday, January 25.

If you missed the deadline, you will automatically be enrolled into SHIP and have a premium charge of $669 for the spring and summer terms applied to your Access account.
Approximately 1,750 students had not documented their coverage as of January 22.

If you already have health insurance and missed the deadline, please take the following steps:
•     Bring, fax or email your insurance coverage documentation to the Memorial Health Center.  A staff member will enter the information and will credit the insurance charge on your Access account.
•     Health Center staff members will make changes only until February 18, 30 days after the first day of classes.
•     To learn more about the policy, see the Student Plan coverage and FAQs page at smu.edu/healthinsurance.

The new policy will help ensure that the health needs of SMU students can be met when they require services outside the scope of the Health Center. The President’s Executive Council passed the mandatory health insurance requirement in February 2008.

–Patrick Hite
Executive Director
Memorial Health Center

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