Medical Clearance and Health Insurance Information
Office of International Education
- Medical Records, Immunizations, & the Health Form
- Health Clearance & Tuberculosis Testing
- Health Insurance Requirement
- Health Insurance for Students who Hold a State Graduate Assistantship
- Health Insurance for Students who Hold a Research Foundation Assistantship
- Students with Alternative Comparable Health Insurance Coverage
- Family/Spouse/Dependent Health Insurance
- Traveler's Insurance
New York State public health laws require that all students provide documentary evidence of their health history and immunizations (measles, mumps, rubella, and meningitis).
Accordingly, you must complete the Student Health Form found on the ESF Health Services site with your doctor/physician. The form must be submitted to Division of Student of Affairs prior to the beginning of your first semester.
Completed Health Forms should be mailed to:
Division of Student Affairs
1 Forestry Drive
110 Bray Hall
Syracuse, NY 13210
Or emailed to:
If you do not supply these records to Health Services prior to or upon your arrival, you will be required to obtain immunization(s) upon arrival and insurance may not cover this expense. Please avoid this expense by providing your completed medical record as soon as possible.
As part of the health clearance process for new students, you are required to go through tuberculosis screening in accordance with state and county guidelines. This clearance process should be completed as soon as you arrive in Syracuse. If a chest x-ray is medically necessary for this clearance, it must be taken and read in the United States or Canada within 3 months of arrival. Therefore, please plan to have all your tuberculosis testing done as part of health clearance at Crouse Medical Practice immediately upon arrival to campus; do not attempt to complete this in your home country as the testing will need to be repeated in the US. Returning students from Leave of Absence may or may not be required to have the testing done again. Please consult with the Crouse Medical Services by calling 315-766-1628.
There is no initial charge for the health clearance appointment. Charges will result if students require immunizations (e.g., MMR vaccines) or lab work related to a positive TB result.
Failure to complete the health clearance in a timely fashion will result in a hold being placed on a student's account.
ESF students who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents are required by SUNY policies to maintain adequate health insurance with medical evacuation and repatriation coverage. International students (F-1 or J-1 status) are automatically enrolled in the SUNY Health Insurance Plan prior to matriculation and the fee for the medical coverage is added to the Bursar bill. You will be enrolled in this insurance every year of your program and the coverage will continue until graduation. No exemption from the health insurance fee shall be allowed except for participants presenting evidence of a religious objection or those individuals for whom comparable coverage has been obtained through an exchange agreement, an employment benefit, or foreign government sponsorship.
Please note that neither the State of New York, through its agents, nor the State University of New York through its agents and employees, is responsible in any manner whatsoever for the payment of any claim for health-related services provided to individuals covered under this insurance policy. The State of New York and State University of New York are not responsible for obligations incurred by individuals who are not covered by this insurance policy. All individuals participating in the University’s health insurance programs described herein are responsible for reviewing all descriptions of the scope and level of coverage offered by this policy. Such participants will be solely responsible for obtaining additional coverage not provided under this program if such is deemed necessary by the participant.
International students will also be given the opportunity to purchase additional health insurance through ESF's Health and Counseling Services if desired. This is not required.
F-1 Visa holders who hold a State Graduate Assistantship are required to enroll in the Graduate Students Employees Union (GESU) Health Insurance Plan. Students will be billed for supplemental Medical Evacuation and Repatriation coverage as the GSEU insurance does not include this coverage. contact Human Resources (216 Bray Hall) before seeking any medical care, including the medical requirements for the Health Clearance, to enroll in this plan.
F-1 Visa holders who hold a Research Foundation Assistantship have the choice between the SUNY International Health Insurance through the Cashiers Office or the Research Foundation Student Health Insurance (RFHI). If you choose the RFHI, you must provide a copy of the insurance application (not the hire form) to the Cashier's Office in order to just be billed for medical evacuation and repatriation coverage as the RFHI insurance does not include this coverage. To enroll in the RFHI plan, contact Human Resources (216 Bray Hall).
Students who meet an exemption criterion noted above and choose not to carry the SUNY health insurance, must complete the online Health Insurance Waiver. If you believe you qualify for a waiver to not carry the SUNY plan, please contact the Office of International Education. This must be done within 30 days of your arrival to the U.S. If you do not contact the office within this time frame, you will be responsible for the full insurance coverage for that semester.
Please note that comparable coverage is coverage that meets or exceeds all of the minimum requirements noted below.
Minimum Health Insurance Requirements:
- $300,000 USD of coverage per injury/illness
- Accidental Death & Dismemberment Benefits of $10,000 USD
- Deductible of $50 USD
- Coverage for Pre-Existing Conditions (including pregnancy)
- Coverage for Medical Evacuation & Repatriation (may be purchased from SUNY separately)
- Coverage for in-hospital room and board
- Coverage for inpatient treatment of mental and emotional disorders
- Coverage for treatment of alcohol and substance abuse
- Coverage for prescription drugs
- Coverage for lab work, x-rays, and other diagnostic testing
- Coverage for ambulance charges and equipment rental
Adequate health insurance with medical evacuation and repatriation coverage must be obtained for every member of your family who accompanies you to the U.S. The SUNY International Student Health Insurance can be purchased for dependents who join you in the U.S.
If you have children who will be attending public schools, you will be required to show proof of immunization, including the three D.P.T (diptheria, pertussis, tetanus). Bring copies of medical records for yourself and your family members.
It is recommended that international students purchase traveler’s insurance to ensure that medical care coverage is available while en route to the U.S. if your home insurance will not cover the expenses of emergency medical care.