Cal Poly

Health Insurance for Visiting Scholars

All J-1 exchange visitors are required to have health insurance while in the United States. Unlike many other countries, which bear the expense of health care for its residents, individuals in the U.S. are responsible for these expenses themselves. A single day of hospitalization can cost thousands of dollars. A good insurance policy gives you access to excellent medical facilities and provides protection against the enormous costs of health care.

Insurance Requirements

The U.S. Department of State requires that J-1 exchange visitors and their J-2 dependents have sickness and accident insurance for their entire stay in the USA. If the J-1 visitor spends time outside of the USA during the period of the program, health insurance must still be in place for the entire duration of the program. Minimum coverage must provide medical benefits ($100,000 per accident or illness), a deductible not to exceed $500 per accident or illness, expenses associated with the medical evacuation to the home country ($50,000), and repatriation of remains ($25,000).

The Cal Poly International Scholar Health Insurance Plan

Cal Poly has negotiated a reasonable and comprehensive health insurance policy for international scholars. The Cal Poly plan is brokered by USI Student Insurance Services, USA, and administered by Aetna Life Insurance.

How Much Does it Cost?

Aetna International Student and Scholar Insurance Plan Premium Costs for 2017-18 Academic Year

  FALL 2017
09/08/2017 - 12/24/2017
12/25/2017 - 03/27/2018
03/28/2018 - 06/20/2018
06/21/2018 - 09/07/2018
J-1 PREMIUM $429.43 $369.34 $337.83 $314.19 $123.11
SPOUSE $429.43 $369.34 $337.83 $314.19 $123.11
1 CHILD $429.43 $369.34 $337.83 $314.19 $123.11
2 OR MORE CHILDREN $858.47 $738.80 $675.50 $628.03 $246.27

Note:This plan does NOT include vision or dental coverage for anyone 19 years or older

Purchase the Cal Poly mandatory health insurance by calling USI Student Insurance Services at 800-853-5899 upon arrival in the USA. Insurance must be purchased to cover the entire length of your stay. You may purchase the plan by quarter or by month. If your stay spans over two insurance policy periods (past September 7th) and the second period is not available for purchase, you will only be able to purchase insurance initially for the first policy period and then extend your coverage within the second policy period when it becomes available for purchase, usually in the late spring. The International Center will notify you when it becomes available to extend. Please be advised that rates vary for each policy year.

After purchasing the plan over the phone, a receipt and proof of insurance coverage will be sent to you via email. If you do not receive it, please email to request it.

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What does it cover?

  • Medical plan includes medical coverage provided by Aetna Life Insurance Company.
  • For 24-Hour Nurse Advice call toll free: 800-556-1555.
  • Emergency travel medical evacuation and repatriation coverage administered by On Call International, Inc.
    • Send this link to the On Call International brochure to a close family member at home. He or she will need to use it to make arrangements for you on your behalf. It is import and that you call On Call immediately before making any arrangements for emergency travel back to your home country in case of a medical emergency, or repatriation of your remains should you die in the USA. For 24-Hour Emergency Travel Assistance call On Call International:
      • From within the USA call 877-318-6901
      • From outside the USA dial U.S. access code then: 603-328-1909 or visit

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How do I get my Insurance ID card?

You may download your card by logging into the Aetna Student Health web page. You will enter your Cal Poly ID number and your date of birth. You can find your Cal Poly ID number in the web portal under the Personal Info tab. You may also ask the International Center for assistance if you do not yet have your Cal Poly email and portal account activated. Once you know your ID number, you may also get your card on your smart phone with the Aetna mobile app. Text “Apps” to 44040 to download the app.

If you renew your insurance, you will not need a new card.

How Do I Submit a Claim?

  1. Download a claim form:
  2. Fill out the appropriate claim form, attach receipts, and mail them to the address on the form.

Questions regarding claims may be directed to USI Student Insurance Services by calling (800) 853-5899 or e-mail

If you have additional questions about the Cal Poly plan, please contact Susan Tripp by email or by phone at 805-756-7535.


There are no immunization or health tests required to purchase health insurance offered by USI Student Insurance Services, USA.

There are no immunization requirements to apply for a J-1 or F-1 visa, or entry to the USA.

© 2015 California Polytechnic State University Cal Poly International Center
Building 52, Room E32
San Luis Obispo, CA 93407
Phone: (805) 756-1477
Fax: (805) 756-5484