Graduate Student Health Insurance Program

To maintain active health insurance coverage for the 2022-23 academic year, students should enroll or submit a waiver on the JCB insurance website beginning in mid to late June 2022. Details are below.

Visit this site regularly, as it will be updated with information and instructions. 

Health Insurance Requirement

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 tax penalty of at least $800.

Since 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. 

Your Options

Students still have multiple options to satisfy the requirement for health insurance, as follows:

  • For most graduate students, they may show proof of existing insurance from an employer (including SDSU), a family member, or another source of Affordable Care Act-compliant coverage.
  • Graduate students may sign up through Covered California, which has dramatically expanded subsidies in recent months for those who qualify based on income.
  • Graduate students may choose to proceed with enrollment in a graduate student health insurance plan from Anthem offered through the university.  Students will be able to use their financial aid and work with Student Account Services on payment plans for this cost, should they choose to meet the requirement by proceeding with enrollment in this plan. 
Assistance is Available

For questions about health insurance options or referrals, our Healthcare Coverage Coordinator is here to assist you. To request a one-on-one appointment with our Healthcare Coverage Coordinator, please fill out the online Healthcare Connection Coordinator Virtual Assistance form.

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's Economic Crisis Response Team (ECRT).

Exemption Requests

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 @sdsu.edu email address.

Additional Information

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

1. I have a ACA-compliant health insurance already.

Beginning in mid to late June (specific date to be updated soon) and through September 15, you can opt out and waive enrollment in the Anthem Blue Cross insurance plan by following these steps: To opt out, take the following steps: 

  • Visit JCBins.com
  • Search for and choose “San Diego State University”
  • Select the 2022-2023 plan year and “Domestic graduate student”
  • Provide your proof of coverage by uploading an image of your current insurance card
  • Monitor your SDSU email for follow up from JCB Insurance regarding approval of your waiver or requests for any follow-up information.
  • Once you receive approval, you’re all set! This action is required just once per academic year.


2. I do not have health insurance.

If you do not have health insurance, you have the following options available to you:

  • You can choose to proceed with enrollment in a health insurance plan offered through SDSU. For detailed information about this Anthem Blue Cross plan, the summary of benefits and coverage, the Anthem medical provider network, and conditions, visit JCBins.com, enter San Diego State University, select the 2022-2023 plan year and “Domestic graduate student”.
  • You can explore your eligibility for low-cost or no-cost Medi-Cal insurance. Covered California (the U.S. Affordable Care Act exchange in California) also offers subsidies to assist with monthly costs. The university has advising and support for both Medi-Cal and Covered CA exploration and enrollment. To access support, complete the online Health Insurance Enrollment Specialists form.

3. I do not have health insurance and cannot afford the Athem Plan. I do not know what to do.

If you are struggling to afford health insurance, you should first explore your eligibility for low-cost or no-cost Medi-Cal insurance. Covered California (the U.S. Affordable Care Act exchange in California) also offers subsidies to assist with monthly costs. SDSU has advising and support for both Medi-Cal and Covered CA exploration and enrollment. To access support, complete the online Health Insurance Enrollment Specialists form to get connected to assistance.

If you are not eligible for these options, or if the cost creates a financial hardship for you, you can reach out to SDSU's Economic Crisis Response Team (ECRT) to learn about financial assistance that may be available to you from the university.

Coverage from 8/15/2022 - 1/15//2023

Cost: $1,223.57

2022-2023 Plan Information

Plan and waiver details will be available on JCBIns.com in mid to late June. Return to this site for more information in upcoming days.

Resources to better understand your health insurance plan

This video from 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.

For Faculty

SDSU faculty interested in sponsoring a graduate student's health insurance with SDSURF funds should complete a GSHIP Authorization Request. For Fall 2022, submit the form by August 15, 2022.

* This authorization request enables direct billing for the student’s health insurance plan, with no out of pocket costs.

* Graduate students sponsored through your request will be enrolled in the insurance plans directly.  Please advise them not to take any actions through the JCBins.com student portal.

GSHIP Frequently Asked Questions

A: Students enrolled in graduate or post-baccalaureate programs at SDSU and SDSU Imperial Valley, 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 or SDSU Imperial Valley master’s or doctoral program
  • enrolled in an SDSU or SDSU 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, visit JCBins.com and enter the university’s name in the search function, along with the coverage period and plan type or student classification, then click “View My School Portal”.

A: The Fall semester coverage session is from August 15, 2022 to January 15, 2023. The Spring/Summer coverage session will be from January 16, 2023 to August 14, 2023.

You can access your health insurance information, including electronic ID cards 3 weeks after enrolling in the plan, or 2-3 weeks after the start date of the plan – whichever is later. The fall plan will start August 15, 2022.

You can also access your ID card with the 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 www.anthem.com/ca or call Anthem Student Advantage at: 1-800-888-2108.

If you are unable to download the app, please register here: https://www.anthem.com/register/

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.
 
Starting on June 15, if your insurance meets these four requirements, you may opt out by visiting JCBins.com. Search for San Diego State University, select the 2022-2023 coverage year and “Domestic Graduate Students”, and follow the prompts. You will need to create an account if you do not yet have one.
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 California (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: Reach out to SDSU's Healthcare Coverage Coordinator by filling out the online form. You can also request a meeting by filling out the form.

You will be able to discuss your needs with the coordinator, who can then provide you with helpful advice about health insurance plans you may qualify for, review the various options available to you, as well as assist with MediCal or Covered California enrollment.

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.

SDSU students who are in need of insurance coverage can reach out to SDSU's Healthcare Coverage Coordinator by filling out the online form for assistance. You will be able to discuss your needs with the coordinator, who can then provide you with helpful advice about health insurance plans you may qualify for and help you review the various options available to you.

A: 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. For healthcare needs that require care beyond what Student Heath is able to offer, students need health insurance to access specialty and diagnostic services, as well as urgent and emergency care.

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 JCBins.com web interface, please email [email protected] or call the JCB/SDSU Student Help Line at 619-415-0233.