Information about Health Insurance

The University of Akron and the English Language Institute require that all international students on F-1 or J-1 visas purchase major medical health insurance. J visa holders must also have catastrophic insurance for themselves, their spouse, and each dependent.

This insurance is necessary because the United States does not have a national health care system and medical care is very expensive. If you need to see a doctor or go to a hospital while you are in the U.S., the insurance company will pay for some of your bills. If you do not have an insurance policy, you will be expected to pay for all the expenses by yourself.

Students have two options for buying a health insurance policy.

Buying a Health Insurance Policy: Two Choices

  • Buying Health Insurance through The University of Akron

    The University of Akron offers an insurance plan that meets all of the requirements for international students and scholars.

    To find out more about this policy and to buy it, go to Health Insurance and click on the link entitled 2012-2013: The University of Akron Student Injury and Sickness Insurance Plan. This page describes everything that the insurance will cover if you need medical attention while in Akron.

    The following chart shows the costs of The University of Akron plan in 2011 and 2012. Please note that these rates are subject to change.

    The University of Akron Student Health Insurance Plan

    University Health Coverage
    (one year from
    8/20/11 to 8/19/12)
    (about 4 months
    from 8/20/11/ to 1/8/12)
    Spring and Summer
    (about 8 months
    from 1/9/12 to 8/19/12)
    (about 3 months
    from 5/14/12 to 8/19/12)
    $ 961.00
    $ 380.00
    $ 600.00
    $ 262.00
  • Waiving the University Health Care Plan

    To waive the university health care plan means that you decide not to buy it because you already have another insurance plan that is even better. This other plan, for example, might be paid for by your government sponsor, by your scholarship program, or through your parents' coverage.

    The University of Akron must review all other plans to make sure they include all the benefits necessary for international students. To have your other policy reviewed, you must go to Health Insurance and click on the link entitled "Waiver Request Form." This page is the Student Resources Page for United Health Care. It allows you to waive the University of Akron insurance plan.

    If you select the link to waive the university plan, you will be asked to provide detailed information about your own plan. An official at the University will review your plan to make sure it includes all the necessary coverage. If yes, your plan will be accepted; if no, you will be required to buy the university's plan.

Important Things to Remember about Health Insurance

  • F-1 students and J-1 scholars (and their dependents) MUST have health insurance in order to enroll at The University of Akron. If you do not have insurance, you CANNOT register for classes.

  • F-1 students are strongly advised to buy health insurance for their dependents. Medical costs are high in the United States and we do not have a national health care system.

  • If you choose The University of Akron insurance policy, you MUST purchase it online at the site linked above.

  • If you have your own insurance, the policy MUST be reviewed and approved by a university official, a process that can take several days. You must request the waiver at the site linked above.

  • If you have any questions about health insurance, please e-mail the ELI at