Health Care and Insurance

Introduction

Health care in the United States can be very expensive. The U.S. government does not provide free or subsidized medical care for non-U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Therefore, it is extremely important to have adequate health insurance to help cover high medical costs. Health insurance can be expensive, but in the long run, is cheaper than high medical costs. It is important to note that insurance plans do not cover all health costs 100%. The insured person is usually responsible for paying a certain percentage of the bill. Most basic health insurance plans do not include dental or optical (eye) coverage.


Mandatory Insurance Plan

The University System of Georgia has a mandatory health insurance plan for all international students enrolled at Georgia's public colleges and universities. The insurance fee must be paid each semester along with your tuition.


Undergraduate Intl. Student Health Insurance

Undergraduate students entering in the Fall semester with F-1 and J-1 visas are required to purchase the PGH plan. Fall semester coverage will begin August 1, 2015 and Spring semester coverage will begin January 1, 2016. More information is available on this linked brochure.


Graduate Intl. Student & Visiting Scholars Health Insurance 

Graduate students are required to enroll with a comprehensive plan at the Graduate Student Health Insurance website. 


Immunization Requirements

The University System of Georgia requires immunization documents from every newly admitted and readmitted student. Georgia College will forward to each newly admitted student a Certificate of Immunization form that is to be competed by the student's physician or health facility official verifying that the student has received the required immunizations. Students enrolling at GC must document the following immunizations: two MMR (Measles, Mumps and Rubela), Varicella (Chicken Pox), Tetanus, and Hepatitis B (Hepatitis B is required if you are 18 or under and strongly recommended if over 18). In addition, students living in University Housing are strongly recommended to receive an immunization for Meningitis and should inform themselves about the risks of the disease at www.uhs.uga.edu.

Be sure to obtain the appropriate documentation on the Certificate of Immunization form and submit it to the GC Office of the Registrar for evaluation prior to enrollment. It is much easier if you can obtain the necessary immunizations in your home country PRIOR to your arrival in Georgia. If you have further medical attention (after you have submitted your forms, but prior to arrival on campus), bring documentation to that effect with you to the International Center. If you have not received the required immunizations upon your arrival on campus, you can obtain the necessary immunizations at the Baldwin County Health Center located at 935 Barrows Ferry Rd NE (478-445-4274).


Student Health Services

Student Health Services provides GC students treatment for acute minor illnesses and injuries. Staff can provide medicine and referral to community specialists. In addition, Health Services provides students with advice and counseling about diet, nutrition, eating disorders, alcohol and drug use, sexually transmitted diseases, exercise, stress, and many other topics. These services are provided free of charge to GC students. 


Emergency and After-Hours Services

In case of emergency, students should go directly to the emergency room at Oconee Regional Medical Center or call 911. For non-emergencies during evenings or weekends, students can visit Convenient Care MD After Hours Care Clinic located at 111 Fieldstone Dr, Suite 114 (478-414-1414). 


Counseling Services

Professional counselors are available to meet individually and confidentially with students who have any personal concerns. If you are feeling stressed, lonely, confused, depressed, or just need someone with whom to talk, you can make an appointment with Counseling Services to speak with one of the staff members. Some topics of concern may include adjusting to University life and/or life in the United States, relationships, stress/time management, depression, and deciding on a career path.