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Health Care & Insurance

Dealing with health-related issues in a new country and understanding the United States' healthcare system can be a challenge. The following information provides a brief explanation of health and health insurance topics that may be helpful to understand during your time at Earlham College. 
The College Health Services provides medical care on an outpatient basis to all students. Health Services is staffed by one part-time family physician and several nurses. Professional services are free, but charges are made for most medications. Students whose illness requires hospitalization will be taken to Reid Hospital in Richmond. Consent for treatment is implied when students register at Earlham; parents will be notified when a student is threatened with a serious illness.

We encourage you to take an active role in staying well by practicing good nutrition, getting adequate rest and sleep, exercising, and continuing to take any medications that support your physical and emotional well-being.
Due to the high cost of health care in the United States, (a regular doctor's visit $70-150, a visit to a hospital emergency room $1500+) most U.S. citizens rely on medical insurance to help cover these costs. Without insurance, a serious accident or injury for international students can be financially devastating and can lead to the end of an academic career. Therefore, all international students attending Earlham are required to have health insurance. Students must participate in the Earlham health insurance plan if they cannot provide proof of equal or better insurance that covers them while in the U.S.

Typically, insurance in the U.S. covers only a portion of medical expenses and you are responsible for paying the balance directly to your health care provider. Earlham's current plan covers 80% (in network) or 60% (out-of-network) of basic medical expenses. There is an annual deductible of $250. The 2022-2023 fee for one full year is $1,651.00. You will be automatically billed in the fall for Earlham College Student Health Insurance Plan for the entire year, unless you can provide proof of equal or better coverage within the U.S. Eyeglasses and dental work are not covered by Earlham student insurance. Contact the office of Human Resources for more information.
If you currently take a prescribed medication ask your doctor to translate the name into English and to provide its Latin compound. This will allow you to continue to take the most similar medication while you are in the U.S.
You are required to have your immunizations for Diphtheria, Tetanus, Measles, Mumps, and Rubella up to date. You will not be permitted to enroll in classes if you have not had these immunizations. You will receive more detailed information from Health Services. Please read this information carefully, arrange to have the immunizations prior to your arrival and bring all relevant documentation with you if you are unable to submit it in advance.
The Health and Counseling Services staff can assist with physical and emotional changes involved in cultural adjustment. For example:

Physical Changes:
  • Stomach pain
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue or being tired
  • Lack of concentration
  • Change in appetite (more or less hungry)
  • Change in sleep patterns
Emotional Changes:
  • Loneliness, missing family and friends
  • Feelings of isolation
  • Homesickness
  • Tension
  • Nervousness and worry
  • Fear of failure
If you begin to notice any of these changes in yourself, first remember that this is a normal part of an adjustment cycle. Try some of the following suggestions and then if the problem persists or changes are severe, consult an International Student Adviser, Health Services, or the Counseling Center.

Some Tips for Dealing with Adjustment Challenges
  • Spend time in a place that is comfortable for you, a place where you can relax and be yourself.
  • If you feel overwhelmed, take a break, assess what is to be done and establish a list of priorities.
  • Make sure to get enough rest and proper nutrition. Establish a regular sleeping and eating pattern.
  • Exercise.
  • Share your feelings with a friend or with an International Student Adviser. Chances are they have experienced similar changes in the past.
If you have paid for the Earlham College Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) you should understand the plan and your coverage. Additional information can be found above.