University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota

New Students

Health Care and Insurance

Medical expenses in the United States are extremely high­—one day in the hospital can cost well over $10,000 even for routine care. International students and their dependents are not eligible to use any public assistance programs that are supported by the U.S. government or the State of Minnesota.

The University requires that all international students and their dependents enroll in the University-administered health insurance program—the Student Health Benefit Plan (SHBP). All international students will automatically be enrolled each semester.

Students holding a qualifying graduate assistantship appointment will be eligible to enroll in the Graduate Assistantship Plan as an alternative to the SHBP.

International students should NOT purchase alternative insurance from a private insurance company for themselves or their dependents.

For enrollment dates, cost, coverage details and more information, visit the Office of Student Health Benefits website. Please contact the Office of Student Health Benefits ( or 612-624-0627) if you have questions about the SHBP or the Graduate Assistant Health Plan.

Pre-Existing Conditions

The University’s insurance plans cover any pre-existing conditions. If you have a health condition (e.g. diabetes, heart problems, asthma, depression, etc.) that requires ongoing care, please make sure to bring copies of your medical records with you to Minnesota as well as a list of medications you are taking so that your care is not interrupted. You may also wish to complete the medical history form in consultation with your physician at home and bring it with you to Minnesota. You may find the form on the Boynton Health website.

Dependent Insurance

International students are required to enroll any dependents who are in the United States in F-2 or J-2 status into the University’s insurance plan. Dependents are not enrolled automatically on the plan. They are covered from the date of their arrival as long as the F-1 or J-1 student completes the enrollment paperwork with the Office of Student Health Benefits within 30 days of their arrival.
For information about cost and coverage details, visit or contact

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