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Health Insurance


The US Department of State requires all J-1 Exchange Visitors and their J-2 dependents to carry health, repatriation and medical evacuation insurance during the period of time they are participating in the Exchange Visitor Program.  An Exchange Visitor’s visa status will be terminated if it is determined that the EV and accompanying dependents willfully failed to remain in compliance.

Exchange Visitors do not need to buy insurance prior to arrival in the US; however, they must have funds available to purchase it for themselves and their dependents after their arrival on campus. Payment must be made either with a credit card, personal check, money order or cashier’s check.


  1. Unlimited coverage per Injury or Sickness.
  2. Unlimited coverage for essential benefits, including hospitalizations, doctor services, prescription drugs, rehabilitation and mental health services, pregnancy, and newborn care. A complete list of essential benefits can be found at:
  3. Coverage for preventative care at 100% in network including immunizations, physicals exams/screenings, and birth control. A complete list of preventive services can be found at:
  4. 80% of medical expenses must be paid by the insurance company.
  5. Covered Expenses related to pregnancy.
  6. Pre-existing Conditions cannot be excluded for any Covered Persons younger than the age of 19.
  7. Insurance Company must have a phone contact within the United States.
  8. Proof of coverage must be provided in English and U.S. currency only.
  9. $10,000 coverage for medical evacuation (medical evacuation provides transportation to your home country in the event of a medical emergency).
  10. $10,000 coverage for repatriation (repatriation provides transportation to your home country in the event of death).

NOTE: Any benefits with a waiting period in force will NOT meet the guidelines to waive coverage.

UK's Minimum Health Insurance Criteria              

Please note that the University of Kentucky insurance requirements exceed those of the Exchange Visitor Program. The requirements of that program are inadequate because they have not been updated in recent years and do not cover current medical costs.

If an Exchange Visitor has insurance from another source, it MUST meet ALL the required insurance specifications listed above. If non UK health insurance is used, a letter from the insurance company written on company letterhead is required that clearly states that all the required insurance specifications written above have been met with their health insurance plan. We cannot review insurance policies. Give this letter from the insurance company to your J-1 Advisor when you have your initial meeting. Only the insurance statement along with a completed health insurance waiver obtained from your J-1 Advisor will satisfy the health insurance requirement.

Upon arrival, UnitedHealthcare Student Health Insurance can be purchased independently online by following the instructions below.  If assistance is needed, please email Ms. Emily Duncan at to make an appointment for assistance.  Coverage begins the day after enrollment.  A J-2 cannot purchase insurance separately from the J-1.

1. Visit 

2. Click on “Enroll Online”, listed under “Enrollment”.  You may also follow the step by step guide at the link at the bottom of this page.

3. Follow directions to enroll yourself and/or any dependents.

4. Save confirmation e-mail sent within minutes of enrollment completion.

5. Insurance proof must be given within three days to the J-1 Advisor.
Plan beginning and ending dates

Although the dates of this plan may not match your exact stay, the insurance company permits Visiting Scholars to purchase coverage for less than the entire benefit year (8/15/15-8/14/16) when needed. The UK plan is available in six (6) 2-month periods per benefit year.  These dates and rates cannot be changed to match your arrival or departure dates.

Enrolling in the plan

You will need a local address, a temporary social security number/UK ID number (ask your department for assistance if necessary), and a credit or debit card to enroll in the UK Student Health Insurance Plan online. 


Note:  If you must use your “temporary social security number” to enroll in the insurance plan, contact the insurance company at (855) 856-2385 when you receive your UK ID number to update your account.


You can either purchase the number of periods you need in one transaction, or you may return to the website to purchase additional coverage periods at a later time. Remember, you must maintain insurance coverage for your entire stay at UK.