Graduate Student Health Insurance Program

Spring 2022 Waiver Submission Instructions

To maintain active health insurance coverage, students renewing their Anthem plans should enroll on the JCB insurance website and complete payment no later than January 14, 2022.

SDSU supports exemption requests on the basis of deeply held religious beliefs. To request this type of exemption, email [email protected] with the subject line, “Graduate Student Health Insurance Religious Exemption Request”. Note that students requesting this exemption may be asked to provide supporting documentation. All communications will be sent to the student's email address.


Life without health insurance carries serious risk to your health, wellness, and personal finances.  To ensure that all graduate students carry adequate health coverage, San Diego State University has introduced the comprehensive Graduate Student Insurance Program (GSHIP). GSHIP expands your coverage options to include an excellent health insurance plan the university has contracted with the insurance carrier Anthem, designed and priced for our graduate student population. 

The federal Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires taxpayers and their dependents to carry health insurance. In California, those who have not obtained health care must pay a $750 tax penalty. Beginning with the Fall 2021 semester, all SDSU graduate students will be required to provide proof of ACA-compliant health insurance coverage. Students with existing health insurance through an employer, family member, or any other source are required only to provide evidence of coverage once per year. 

Dedicated SDSU staff are available to counsel students without health care coverage (or temporarily between plans), and provide advice on selecting among a range of health insurance options. Those struggling to afford any of the available options may be eligible for financial support from SDSU ECRT.

If you are an SDSU graduate student, consider which of the following best describes your situation:

1. I have a Fall waiver and don't need to change my health insurance plan.

- You don't need to do anything until the Fall 2022 enrollment cycle opens.

2. I have a Fall 2021 waiver, but would like to purchase Anthem health insurance through GSHIP for Spring/Summer 2022.

- Go to  Search for San Diego State University, select the 2021-2022 plan year and “Domestic Graduate Students”.  On the next page, select the option “Need to enroll in Student Insurance?”  See the “Spring 2022 Waiver Submission Instructions” pdf at the top of this page to see a walkthrough of the JCB student portal screens.

3. I have health insurance, but have not yet obtained a waiver.

- Email [email protected] (include your Red ID) with information about your current health insurance coverage. 

- Submit a waiver request to JCB insurance for the Spring term. Go to Search for San Diego State University, select the 2021-2022 plan year and “Domestic Graduate Students”. On the next page, select the option “Already have Insurance?”  You can open the “Spring 2022 Waiver Submission Instructions” pdf at the top of this page to see a walkthrough of the JCB student portal screens.

* Note that health insurance information from Student Health Service HealtheConnect is not automatically transmitted into the JCB student portal.  Graduate students must submit that information separately to JCB.

* Note that health insurance benefits from employment at SDSU are not automatically transmitted into the JCB student portal. Graduate students must submit that information separately to JCB.

4. I have health insurance starting soon, but none at this time.

- Email [email protected] (include your Red ID) with information about your upcoming health insurance coverage, and the GSHIP Team will advise.

5. I do not have health insurance, and the Anthem plan through GSHIP is my best option. I can afford this plan.

- Email [email protected] (include your Red ID) and state your interest in obtaining an Anthem health insurance plan immediately.  Confirm that you will be continuing with that plan through Summer 2022.  The SDSU GSHIP Team will reply with instructions about completing these two processes.

6. I do not have health insurance, and can’t afford the Anthem plan. I don’t know what to do.

- See the last FAQ on this page “I still need help, or I have questions specific to my situation. Who can I talk to?”.  Request an appointment with the SDSU Healthcare Coverage Coordinator ASAP!

Coverage from 1/21/2022 - 8/14/2022

Cost: $1,334

Coverage from 8/15/2021 - 1/20/2022

Cost: $1,030

2021-2022 Plan Information

To purchase optional Anthem Student Advantage Dental and/or Blue View Vision adult coverage, visit, and choose “Anthem Dental” or “Blue View Vision” under student type on the home page.  Do not select Domestic Graduate Student on the home page to start this purchase. Both enrollments (dental, vision) will need to be done separately, starting at the home page.

Resources to better understand your health insurance plan

This handout from SDSU Student Health Services defines some common health insurance terms.

This web page has some general advice about using health insurance and communicating with health insurance providers.

Fill out this form to request a one-on-one appointment with SDSU's Community Resource Specialist regarding health insurance.

You can access your health insurance information online about 1 week after you sign up.

Access your ID card with Sydney Health app…With the Sydney Health app through Anthem Student Advantage, you have instant access to: 

  • Your member ID card
  • The Find a Doctor tool
  • More information about your plan benefits
  • Health tips that are tailored to you
  • LiveHealth Online and 24/7 Nurse Line
  • Student support specialists (through click-to-chat or by phone).

From your mobile device or tablet go to the App Store or Google Play and search for the Sydney Health app to download it today. Questions about the app, please visit or call Anthem Student Advantage at: 1-800-888-2108.

If you are unable to download the app, please register here:

For Faculty

SDSU faculty interested in sponsoring a graduate student's health insurance with SDSURF funds should complete a GSHIP Authorization Request

  • Fall: Please submit form by August 15 *
  • Spring/Summer: Please submit by January 15

* The form permits committing to both Fall & Spring/Summer periods at the start of the academic year. 

Sponsored graduate students will be enrolled in the insurance plans directly, please advise them not to take action through

GSHIP Frequently Asked Questions

A: Students enrolled in graduate or post-baccalaureate programs on the San Diego or Imperial Valley main campuses, and post-doctoral scholars employed by the SDSU Research Foundation, are required to carry health coverage.

You are subject to the requirement if you are 

  • enrolled in an SDSU main campus or Imperial Valley master’s or doctoral program
  • enrolled in an SDSU main campus or Imperial Valley post-baccalaureate credential or advanced certificate program
  • employed as a postdoctoral scholar by the SDSU Research Foundation

You are not subject to the requirement if you are

  • enrolled in an SDSU undergraduate program
  • enrolled through SDSU Global Campus
A: International students continue to be required to carry health insurance as a condition of their F1 Visa.  International student plans are already being coordinated through JCB Insurance, so no new actions are needed.
A: Graduate students have the option of enrolling in the Anthem Student Advantage health insurance plan offered through San Diego State University. Only the SDSU graduate student is covered with a GSHIP plan (dependent benefits are not available). For specific information about the terms of coverage, refer to

A: The Fall semester coverage session is from August 15, 2021 to January 20, 2022. The Spring/Summer coverage session is from January 21, 2022 to August 14, 2022.

A: Even when you are young and healthy, insurance provides financial protection in case of serious accident or illness. Securing health insurance can be complicated and overwhelming, but SDSU is here to help. Staff are assigned to advise you on all available insurance options and financial support.

Two essential things graduate students should consider about why you need health insurance

  • Without insurance, health emergencies can be financially catastrophic. With insurance, they are manageable. 
  • Regular preventative care is inexpensive or no-cost, and it keeps you healthy.
A: Yes, there is a simple waiver process if you already have health insurance through an employer (including SDSU), family member, the Covered CA exchange, or another source. The essential requirements for a waiver are:
1) The health insurance is ACA-compliant.
2) The health insurance provider is owned, headquartered, and operated in the United States.
3) Coverage is active at the time you submit your waiver.
4) The insurance provides access to care within the San Diego area and surrounding Counties.  PPOs often cover both in-network and out-of-network providers for primary care, specialty care, and emergency/urgent care. But HMOs typically cover only in-network providers within a specific geographical region, and outside of that set region only emergency/urgent care is covered.  Students with MediCal may have coverage for San Diego County, Imperial County, LA County, Orange County, or Riverside County.
If your insurance meets these four requirements, you may opt out by visiting Search for San Diego State University, select the 2021-2022 coverage year and “Domestic Graduate Students”, and follow the prompts. You will need to create an account.
A: If you are struggling to afford health insurance, you should first explore your eligibility for low-cost or no-cost Medi-Cal insurance. Covered CA (the U.S. Affordable Care Act exchange in California) also offers subsidies to assist with monthly costs. If you are not eligible for these options, or if the cost creates a financial hardship for you, you can reach out to the Economic Crisis Response Team (ECRT) to learn about financial assistance that may be available to you from the university.
A: Submit a request to speak with a campus partner, who can assist you in obtaining insurance through Covered California or Medi-Cal by visiting online:
A: No. Only domestic students enrolled in main campus graduate or post-baccalaureate programs are eligible to enroll in a graduate student plan. Other groups (such as undergraduates, graduate students not currently registered for courses in a main campus graduate program, graduate students in Global Campus degree programs) are not currently permitted to opt in.
A: The Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires that U.S. citizens and legal residents have health insurance. The health and wellness fee you pay each semester provides access to Student Health Services (SHS), but is not a health insurance plan under ACA guidelines. SHS is a healthcare facility that can address basic health care needs while on campus, in Calpulli Center. SHS offers quality and convenient healthcare by certified healthcare professionals. The health and wellness fee also supports Well-being & Health Promotion, Counseling & Psychological Services, as well as Student Ability Success Center.

A: A Healthcare Coverage Coordinator is here to assist you with additional questions about health insurance options or referrals. To request a one-on-one appointment with our Healthcare Coverage Coordinator, please fill out the online Healthcare Connection Coordinator Virtual Assistance form. With questions about the web interface, please email [email protected] or call the JCB/SDSU Student Help Line at (619) 415-0233.