About the Columbia Insurance Plan

Students at Teachers College, Union Theological Seminary, Jewish Theological Seminary, or Columbia University Medical Center should contact their schools for insurance information.
 
The Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan works with Columbia Health to provide consistent, efficient care that complements the programs offered on campus:
  • Medical Services providers are the primary care providers for students enrolled in the Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan.
  • Clinicians in both Medical Services and Counseling and Psychological Services work closely with Aetna Student Health Claims Administrators, Inc. when necessary to help arrange access to benefits available through the Columbia Plan.
  • A referral by a Medical Services or Counseling and Psychological Services clinician is mandatory when seeking non-emergency off-campus services. If a referral is not obtained prior to seeking services, no benefits will be available under the Columbia Plan.   

Note: The Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan may not cover all of your health care expenses. The plan excludes coverage for certain services and contains limitations on the amounts it will pay. Please read the Student Health Insurance Plan Brochure carefully before deciding which plan is right for you. While this document will tell you about some of the important features of the Plan, other features may be important to you and some may further limit what the Plan will pay. Aetna compensates Columbia for certain medical services as well as administrative expenses associated with servicing the insurance plan (including certain personnel expenses incurred by the Columbia Health Insurance office). In addition, based on aggregate claims experience, Aetna may issue a refund to Columbia to be applied toward future premiums. For more information, please review the Student Health Insurance Plan Brochure, which you can access online at www.health.columbia.edu, or view the Master policy issued to Columbia, available at the Columbia Health Insurance Office, or you may contact Aetna Student Health at (800) 859-8471.

Benefits

The Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan includes benefits for medical and mental health conditions including (but not limited to) chiropractic care, mental health care, prescriptions, travel abroad benefits, vision and dental discounts, and more.
Benefits grid comparison for the Gold and Platinum plans.

To review the full benefits covered under the Columbia Plan, a detailed, interactive brochure will be made available as soon as possible.

How to use the interactive brochure

You may navigate to specific selections of the Detailed Brochure by using the "Bookmark Pane" or the "Table of Contents." The latest version of Adobe Reader® is needed to view the brochure.

Plan Premiums

 
Coverage premiums are for the Morningside campus Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan, student rates only:
 
 Fall
(Sept. 1, 2014 - Jan. 19, 2015)
Spring/
Summer
(Jan. 20, 2015 - Aug. 14, 2015)
Total Annual Premium
(Sept. 1, 2014 - Aug. 14, 2015)
Gold Level$1,023$1,485$2,508
Platinum Level$1,404$2,037$3,441

 
 Summer Trimester*
(May 18 - Aug. 14, 2015)
Gold Level$1,023
Platinum Level$1,404
*Applies to new summer trimester students only

Coverage While Traveling

Accessing my benefits while I am out of the country

If you have an accident or illness while traveling outside of the United States you should contact On Call International collect at (603) 328-1956 to coordinate services. On Call is a travel assistance program. Reimbursement for medically necessary care is managed by Aetna Student Health. As Aetna does not maintain a network of providers outside the U.S., services are covered at the In-Network rate.

Accessing my benefits while I am traveling within the U.S.

Medical care obtained 50 miles or more away from the Columbia Morningside Medical Services does not require a referral in advance of service.

The Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan provides students access to a provider network throughout the country. It is the student's responsibility to make sure any off-campus provider is a Preferred Provider in the Aetna network, to be eligible for the highest level of benefits.

Please note: if you elect to receive care from a Out-of-Network Provider, any charges in excess of the Reasonable Charge allowance will not be covered and you will be financially responsible.

Early Arrival Coverage

For students arriving on campus earlier than the beginning of classes in the fall, Aetna Student Health offers an optional Early Arrival Insurance Plan. This plan is recommended for students who will have no other coverage during this period.

The plan is only available to students enrolling in the Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan for the benefit period from September 1, 2014 through August 14, 2015. The benefits are equal to those provided through the Gold level of the Columbia Plan. Students must confirm enrollment in the plan to be eligible for the Early Arrival Plan.


Enrollment

Enrollment is done using a credit card or e-check through the Aetna Student Health website. A student who elects this coverage must also enroll in the Columbia Plan for the fall coverage period. 
 

Premiums
 1-Month Plan
Aug. 1 - 31, 2014
2-Month Plan
July 1 - Aug. 31, 2014
Spring Only*
Jan. 1 - 19, 2015
Student only$297$594$136
* For registered students, arriving on campus earlier than January 20.

What’s New

Every year Columbia Health re-evaluates the benefits of the Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan, making adjustments and negotiating changes as necessary so as to offer the most cost-effective appropriate coverage possible.

Two new insurance plans introduced: Gold and Platinum

For the 2014-15 academic plan year Columbia Health will offer the Gold and Platinum plans which are in line with all applicable federal and state guidelines. This plan year the coverage will be effective from September 1, 2014 through August 14, 2015.

Gold Plan - Highlights

  • $150 In-Network Deductible
  • 20% Coinsurance after Deductible
  • $40 Office Copay
  • $100 Emergency Room Copay
  • $20 Mental Health Copay
  • $20/$50/$75 Prescription Copays

Platinum Plan - Highlights

  • No In-Network Deductible
  • No Coinsurance on most services
  • $20 Office Copay
  • $100 Emergency Room Copay
  • $20 Mental Health Copay
  • $10/$35/$50 Prescription Copays

Detailed plan comparison.

Dependent Enrollment

  • Students wishing to enroll spouses/domestic partners or children must contact the Student Insurance Office. The  premiums will be billed to the students account.
  • Spouses/domestic partners will be charged a $300 per semester Columbia Health Fee
  • Spouses/domestic partners primary care will begin on-campus at Medical Services
  • Referrals will now be required for most non-emergency off-campus medical services for Spouses/domestic partners

Waiver Criteria Changes

  • The waiver criteria have been aligned to meet the requirements of the Affordable Care Act, including but not limited to coverage for pre-existing conditions, no coverage maximums and cost sharing limits. For a complete list of the new waiver criteria please visit the waive section of our website.

Gold versus Platinum

Gold Level of the Plan

The Gold level of the Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan is designed to provide a level of coverage that is adequate for many people attending college or graduate programs. It is appropriate for students who:

  • Do not expect to need health care services frequently
  • Are interested in utilizing a "pay-as-you-go" strategy: participants pay a lower insurance premium at the outset but a higher proportion of the cost of any services that may be utilized

The total maximum per condition/per policy year benefit available in the Gold Level of the Plan is unlimited and the Out-of-Pocket In-Network Limit is $5,000.

Platinum Level of the Plan

The Platinum level of the Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan includes all of the benefits provided by the Gold level of the Plan; the Out-of-Pocket In-Network Limit is $4,000.

This plan is designed for students who have chronic health conditions, this level of the Plan may be appropriate. Students will:

  • Pay a higher insurance premium up front
  • Pay less in out-of-pocket expenses as services are actually used

Detailed plan comparison.

General Policy Provision

The Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan will always pay benefits in accordance with any applicable New York State Insurance Laws. Any questions regarding this content should be addressed to Aetna Student Health.

To review the full policy under the Columbia Plan, a detailed, interactive brochure will be made available as soon as possible.

How to use the interactive brochure

You may navigate to specific selections of the Detailed Brochure by using the "Bookmark Pane" or the "Table of Contents." The latest version of Adobe Reader® is needed to view the brochure

Provider Network

You can visit the Aetna Student Health website for a full listing of providers nationwide. Click on "DocFind®", enter your zip code, and indicate that you belong to a "Student Health Plan.”

After obtaining a referral from a Columbia Health provider to see an off-campus clinician, you want to select a In-Network Provider from the Aetna network in order to maximize your savings and reduce out-of-pocket expenses. It is to your advantage to utilize a In-Network Provider because significant savings can be achieved due to their agreement with Aetna regarding rates of payment for their services.

The Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan provides students access to a provider network throughout the country. It is the student's responsibility to make sure any off-campus provider is an In-Network Provider in the Aetna network, to be eligible for the highest level of benefits.

Please note: if you elect to receive care from a Out-of-Network Provider, any charges in excess of the Reasonable Charge allowance will not be covered and you will be financially responsible.

Students can access healthcare while traveling outside the United States. Please refer to Accessing my benefits while I am out of the country for more information.

Please contact Aetna Student Health Claims Administrators, Inc. for more detailed information.

Using the Directory of Providers

Participating providers are independent contractors in private practice and are neither employees nor agents of Aetna Student Health or Columbia University. The availability of any particular provider cannot be guaranteed for referred or in-network benefits, and provider network composition is subject to change without notice.

Certain primary care physicians may be affiliated with an Independent Practice Association (IPA), a Physician Medical Group (PMG), an integrated delivery system, or one of other provider groups.

Not every provider listed in the directory will be accepting new patients. Although Aetna has identified providers who were accepting patients as known to Aetna at the time the directory was created, the status of a provider's practice may have changed.

For the most current information, please contact the selected physician or Aetna Student Health.

In the event of a problem with coverage, students should contact Aetna Student Health on how to utilize the complaint and appeal procedure when appropriate. All care and related decisions are the sole responsibility of Participating Providers. Aetna does not provide health care services and, therefore, cannot guarantee any results or outcomes.

Plan IDs

Students can expedite receipt of an insurance ID card by actively confirming enrollment in the Gold level of the Columbia Student Health Insurance Plan or by upgrading coverage to the Platinum level of the Plan prior to the specified deadline. After an online selection has been entered, a card is normally issued within 14 days of registering for classes.

Prior to receiving an insurance ID card, some services are available to students enrolled in the Columbia Plan. Healthcare providers may require that students pay for the services and then seek reimbursement from Aetna Student Health (medical claims) or Aetna Pharmacy Management (pharmacy claims).

Please know that students who utilize the Columbia Plan benefits (for prescription coverage, specialist services, etc.) before the enrollment/waiver period has ended, will no longer be eligible to request a waiver from the Columbia Plan. The student's account will be charged for the applicable premium.

A temporary insurance ID card is available by accessing the Aetna Student Health website.

Morningside Dental Associates

For students enrolled in the Columbia Student Medical Insurance Plan, Morningside Dental Associates (MDA), offers specially discounted rates for a select group of services. MDA provides a dental discount program and offers:

  • Convenient locations near campus
  • Comprehensive care including all specialty services
  • No claims forms to complete
  • No requirement to choose a primary care dentist

Located Close to Morningside Campus

Morningside Dental Associates
1244 Amsterdam Avenue (between 121st and 122nd Streets)
New York, NY 10027
(Map to Morningside Dental)

Services Covered By the Plan

For student participants in the Columbia Student Medical Insurance Plan, the following services are available each plan year and only require a copay, which is required for each visit, as indicated in the chart below:

  • One routine examination per year
  • X-rays as needed, and with routine exam
  • One dental cleaning (prophylaxis) per year
  • Evaluation of emergency dental conditions, including relief of pain

Emergency services are provided by appointment during regular MDA office hours. Coverage does not include final treatment or restorations.

Any additional services that are not included above will be charged a discounted rate. 

This program is operated by the Columbia University School of Dental and Oral Surgery, and are not underwritten by Aetna or administered by Aetna Student Health.
 

Specified Routine and Emergency Services

Plan NameCopay Per Visit
Gold Plan$20 copay per visit
Platinum Plan$10 copay per visit

Insurance Brochures

The following written materials are available at the Columbia Health Insurance Office and can also be downloaded here (in PDF format):

2014-15

The 2014-15 plan brochure will be made available as soon as possible.

2013-2014

Note: If you require disability accommodations to access these materials, please contact hs-enrollment@columbia.edu.

 

 

 

 

Last updated October 01, 2014