Frequently Asked Questions



Enrollment Activation and Waiver

The Summer 2 waiver deadline ended 7/11/2019. The online waiver system can no longer accept new waiver requests.


International students with “F” or “J” visa status are required to be covered under the UHS Student Health Insurance Plan or have equivalent health insurance coverage, regardless of the number of credit hours taken. At the time of registration, the student will be charged for the coverage period on their student financial account.

ACTION REQUIRED: Each international student with “F” or “J” visa status must ACTIVATE their enrollment or submit a WAIVER each coverage period.

NOTE: The University must submit an eligible to enroll list to Academic HealthPlans each term. During the ENROLLMENT ACTIVATION and WAIVER period, allow approximately 2-3 business days after the health insurance charge has been posted to your university account for the eligible to enroll list to be processed before attempting to ACTIVATE your enrollment or submit a WAIVER.

INTERNATIONAL STATUS: It is the responsibility of each student to inform the University of their current visa status. Visa status changes that may affect or reverse a student’s waiver or enrollment in the mandatory SHIP must be posted to the student’s university account no later than the posted semester deadline. Submit your status changes as early as possible and follow-up with the appropriate department(s) to ensure all changes are POSTED timely.

Contact the International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) at (713) 743-5065 if you have any questions or concerns about your status.

Go to to view the University of Houston International Student Health Insurance Requirements.

INSURANCE ENROLLMENT ACTIVATION (you wish to be enrolled in the UHS Student Health Insurance Plan):

You will need to ACTIVATE your enrollment in the Student Health Insurance Plan each coverage period. It is recommended that you complete this ACTIVATION at least one week prior to the beginning of the new coverage period to ensure you have access to your insurance account.

Failure to ACTIVATE your enrollment in a timely manner will result in a delay in your ability to use your Student Health Insurance Plan. If you do not ACTIVATE your enrollment in the Student Health Insurance Plan, your enrollment will automatically activate after the close of Open Enrollment Period for the designated coverage period.

WAIVER REQUEST: A waiver of the health insurance fee may be requested online with proof of acceptable alternate insurance. In order to be approved for a waiver of enrollment in the Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP), your alternative health coverage must meet or exceed the requirements as set forth below and be submitted by the waiver deadline date. Please be advised that the waiver request will be reviewed for compliance and verified active with the insurance carrier. Notification of acceptance or rejection of this request will be sent to your University email within seven business days. Late submissions will not be accepted.

A.  An international student may request a waiver of this mandatory health insurance fee in the following instances with proof of acceptable alternate insurance.

1.   The student is sponsored by the U.S. government, the government of the student’s home country if recognized by the U.S. or by certain international, government-sponsored or non-governmental organizations, and if the sponsor has provided a plan equivalent to the SHIP or a letter guaranteeing payment of all health care expenses.

2.   The student is enrolled in an employer-provided group health plan which is equivalent to the SHIP.

If medical evacuation and repatriation that equals the amounts as compared to the SHIP are not included in an otherwise acceptable policy, a rider must be purchased

B.  All International Students with “F” or “J” visa status Student Visa Holders must meet all of the following minimum requirements:

1.   Medical/preventative care benefits equivalent to the UHS-endorsed Student Health Insurance Plan with no annual limits.

2.   Contains no exclusions for pre-existing conditions.

3.   Imposes no provisions for co-insurance that exceed 25% of the covered benefits.

4.   Medical evacuation coverage amount is no less than $50,000.

5.   Repatriation coverage amount is no less than $25,000.

6.   Dates of coverage meet or exceed the requirement for the SHIP coverage period.

·  Spring/Summer: January 1st – August 31st

·  Summer Only: June 1st – August 31st

NOTE: Individual plans, travel plans, or plans that require individuals to pay for treatment before being reimbursed will NOT be accepted for waiver approval.

C.  International “J” Student Visa Holders must have a policy whose deductible does not exceed $500 annually.

D.  International “F” Student Visa Holders must have a policy whose deductible does not exceed $1,500 (individual)/$3,000 (family) annually.

If your alternate coverage meets the above minimum requirements, submit electronic copies of the following documents with your online waiver request:

1.   A scanned copy of the front and back of your health insurance ID card indicating the student as a covered member.

2.   A scanned copy of your complete policy, including coverage amounts, exclusions, and limitations in English using US dollars.

3.   A scanned copy of your medical evacuation and repatriation coverage (if you have this coverage).