Billing and Insurance FAQs

Enrollment & Eligibility

Why is health insurance required at UCSC?
The UC Regents require all students to have health insurance.

How do I get UC SHIP?
All students are automatically enrolled in UC SHIP, no action required.

How do I get my UC SHIP ID card?

Insurance ID cards are electronic. Download the Sydney Health app to access your ID card; find Student Health Center location, hours and services; view medical, pharmacy, dental and vision coverage and claims information; and get notifications for benefit changes and action items.

If you would like a hard copy of your insurance ID card then contact UC SHIP Member Services at 1-866-940-8306.

Will Education Abroad Program (EAP) students be enrolled in UC SHIP? 

Yes, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires EAP students to have ACA-compliant health insurance while abroad. Although EAP provides travel insurance, it does not qualify as ACA-compliant health insurance.

EAP students are automatically enrolled in UC SHIP health insurance unless they successfully waive UC SHIP. UC SHIP provides ACA-compliant, worldwide medical coverage with the Blue Cross Blue Shield Global Core Program. Note: the waiver requirement for services within a 50 mile radius of UCSC does not apply to EAP students. You may need to contact if your waiver is denied due to the 50 mile radius requirement.

Am I eligible if I opted out of UC SHIP last year?
Yes. You will be automatically enrolled in UC SHIP this year unless you complete the online waiver.

Am I eligible for UC SHIP if I've graduated? 
Yes, you can be covered for one additional quarter if you've graduated and you had UC SHIP in the previous quarter. Students who graduate in June are still covered by UC SHIP if they had UC SHIP in the spring quarter; this coverage lasts until the start of the next academic calendar year. To enroll and purchase, complete the Continuation Voluntary Enrollment forms in the Insurance Forms & Helpful Links.

Can I or my dependent enroll in UC SHIP after a Qualifying Life Event?
Registered students and/or eligible dependents may enroll in UC SHIP during the coverage period if they experience one of the following Qualifying Life Events:
  • Involuntary loss of other health insurance coverage
  • Turn 26 and lose coverage as a dependent on a parent's plan
  • Marriage or divorce
  • Birth or adoption of a child
  • Declaration or termination of a Domestic Partnership
Registered students who have a Qualifying Life Event during the coverage period, must notify the UCSC insurance office at within 31 days of the loss of your coverage. You must provide an official written letter of termination from the previous health insurance carrier. You will be enrolled in UC SHIP as of the date of your involuntary loss of other coverage if notification is received within 31 days of the loss of your coverage. If notification is not received within that 31-day period, coverage will be effective on the date on which you pay the full UC SHIP premium.

To enroll a dependent into the plan, please fill out the dependent form for all qualifying event enrollments. The form must be submitted within 31 days of your qualifying event date.

NOTE: Premiums are not prorated for any enrollment occurring after the start of a coverage period, except premiums for newborns added as a dependent.

How do I enroll my newborn?

Newborns of enrolled UC SHIP members (students, eligible spouse, or domestic partner) are covered for the first 31 days after birth, provided Anthem is notified within this time period. For continued newborn coverage beyond the 31 days, the parent must enroll the newborn as a Dependent under UC SHIP within 31 days of the date of birth. To add the newborn as a dependent the student must notify the Student Health Insurance Department at

Costs & Financial Aid

How much does UC SHIP cost?
See UC SHIP Premiums and Dates for information about waiver periods, coverage periods, and quarterly premiums. You can also refer to the UC SHIP Brochure for deductible, coinsurance, copay, and out-of-pocket maximum information. 

Will financial aid pay for my UC SHIP?
For some students, the cost of UC SHIP’s premium is included in your financial aid award. Check your financial aid package or review it in the My UCSC Portal Student Services section. You can also contact the UCSC Financial Aid and Scholarship Office

Will Medi-Cal pay for my UC SHIP?
See the form Health Care for Students with Medi-Cal to learn how UC SHIP works with Medi-Cal.


Will UC SHIP cover me during emergencies or after hours?
Yes. See our After Hours handout for more information. You have a few options:

  • If you can wait until we open, come to Student Health Services during business hours. There is no copay.
  • If it is an urgent issue but not a life-threatening emergency, go to an Urgent Care facility. The copay is $25.
  • If you have a life-threatening emergency, call 911 and/or go to the nearest emergency room. The copay is $125 if you are not admitted to the hospital, and $0 if you are admitted. UC SHIP covers 85% of your hospitalization costs, so your responsibility will be 15% of the bill. Your maximum out of pocket expense is $3,000 if you are using UC SHIP in-network providers and facilities. If you use out-of-network providers or facilities, your out-of-pocket maximum is $6,000.

How does UC SHIP work during leaves of absence, withdrawals, and planned educational leaves?

There are a few important things to know about UC SHIP during leaves.

How can I see a provider when traveling out of the country with UC SHIP?

Here’s what you need to do to ensure everything runs smoothly if you need to see a medical provider while traveling: 

  1. Download the Blue Cross Global Core app on our mobile app webpage. 
  2. If you need care for non-emergency services you must first contact your Student Health Insurance Department at (831) 459-2389 for a referral to see a doctor away from campus.
  3. Call the Blue Cross Global Core Service Center 24/7 at 1-800-810-2583 (BLUE) or call collect at 1-804-673-1177. They can help you set up a doctor visit or hospital stay.
  4. Go to to search for a doctor or hospital or use the Blue Cross Global Core app.

View the UC SHIP Blue Cross Global Core Service flyer for more information. 

Am I covered if I have two insurance plans?

  • Please upload a picture of the front and back of your medical insurance card by logging into Health e-Messenger and clicking on Messages > New Message > Insurance — Submit picture of private health insurance card.
  • For care at the SHC: The SHC will submit claims to Anthem for SHC services. 
  • For care outside of the SHC: Your other medical plan will be considered the primary plan, which means it must pay claims first. After the primary plan processes and pays a claim, your outside provider will submit any remaining charges to UC SHIP (the secondary plan).
  • This holds true for all medical plans except Medi-Cal, MRMIP and TriCare. If you are covered by any of these plans, UC SHIP will be the primary plan, and Medi-Cal/MRMIP/TriCare will be the secondary plan.

Am I covered with Medi-Cal? 
Most Medi-Cal plans only work in your home county. If your permanent residence is outside of Santa Cruz County, you may be able to transfer your Medi-Cal coverage to Santa Cruz County. Contact your Medi-Cal office in your home county to find out, or contact Financial Aid to see if you qualify for a grant to cover UC SHIP. See the form Health Care for Students with Medi-Cal for more information.

Are my dependents covered under UC SHIP?
Yes. Although we cannot see your dependents at Student Health Services, you can choose to voluntarily cover dependents and they will have UC SHIP. For primary care visits, you can take your dependent to any primary care provider in UC SHIP's Anthem Blue Cross PPO network. You won't need a referral from UCSC Student Health Services. For specialist visits for your dependent, your Anthem primary care provider can refer you. Your dependent has access to Urgent Care, hospitals, mental health, pharmacy, vision, and dental care using the Anthem network. You even have a UC Family discount if you use any UC Medical Center. Find Anthem providers in your area. To enroll your dependent, see the voluntary enrollment forms in the Insurance Forms & Helpful Links.

Can I use the Health Center at another UC?
Yes. This is called "reciprocity" between UC Student Health Centers.

  • UCSC students visiting other UC student health centers: UCSC students will be treated the same as students at the other UC campus. If the campus is not a UC SHIP campus (currently that's only UC Berkeley), then students may have to pay for services up front, and then submit statements to UC SHIP for reimbursement. You'll be charged in-network rates.
  • Students from other UCs visiting the UCSC Student Health Center: Students from other UC's will be treated the same as UCSC students. If you have any fees or do not have UC SHIP, then any fees will need to be paid on the date of service. You will receive statements to submit to your insurance carrier for reimbursement.

How do I get proof of UC SHIP coverage or a termination of benefits letter? 

Contact our waiver partner, Academic HealthPlans (AHP), at 

How can I get more information about filing claims or what to do if my payment was denied?
You can contact our insurance staff at and they will assist you with your issue.

What type of UC SHIP coverage do I have as a UCSC graduate Silicon Valley Student?
For primary care visits, you can go to any primary care provider in UC SHIP's Anthem Blue Cross PPO network. You don't need a referral from the UCSC Student Health Services. For specialist visits, your Anthem primary care provider can refer you. You have access to Urgent Care, hospitals, mental health, pharmacy, vision, and dental care using the Anthem network. You even have a UC Family discount if you use any UC Medical Center. Find Anthem providers in your area.

What type of UC SHIP coverage do I have as an outgoing UCSC Undergraduate EAP student? 
You only have medical coverage and not dental or vision coverage. 

How do I find an in network Anthem Blue Cross provider? 

Important: You must get a Student Health Center referral for care outside the SHC, regardless of the distance from campus, except for the following: emergency room care and visits to urgent care clinics, pediatric care, obstetrics services, gynecological care and LiveHealth Online virtual visits. 

Finding the care you need when and where you need it is important. Follow these steps to find care in your plan:

1) Go to

2) Search as a member or guest.

For members — Select Login for Personalized Search on the left. To help you find care providers who would be a good fit for you, we sort your search results and provide the top three matches using Personalized Match. There are more options available below your top three, and you can always re-sort these search results by distance or name.

For guests — If you are not enrolled yet in an Anthem plan, you also can search as a guest. Choose Basic search as a guest. Then answer the questions regarding the type of care you need, the state you need care in, and the type of plan you want to search under.

  • Select the type of plan or network — medical.
  • Choose the state where the plan or network is located.
  • Select Medical (Student Health) for how you get your insurance.
  • Choose a plan or network — in this case, UCSHIP PPO. Select the Continue button.

3) Enter your city, county, or ZIP code. You also can search by doctor, or procedure, as well as using other care-related terms.

4) View your search results. You can filter your results by selecting the relevant
boxes on the left or browsing by list or map views.

Find care
You can start using the Find Care tool by visiting
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How do I get reimbursed when using UC SHIP out of the country? 

There’s a few steps to getting reimbursed for charges incurred for medical care while traveling out of the country:

1. You will need to pay up front in full for your care.

2. Download the international claim form

3. Fill out the claim form and send it with the original bills to the Blue Cross Global Core Service Center. You can submit them through the mobile app, email or USPS postal mail.

4. Make sure to keep a copy of the completed claim form for your records. 

View the UC SHIP Blue Cross Global Core Service flyer for more information 

For additional questions please contact the Student Health Services Insurance Department at


Will my own insurance plan be adequate to waive UC SHIP? 
Compare your insurance plan to the list of requirements and the UC SHIP Mandate letter from UC Regents. Your health insurance must have primary care, behavioral health, and emergency coverage within 30 miles of your local residence while you attend UCSC. UCSC asks for the name of your primary care provider in Santa Cruz County to ensure that you can receive local medical care.

Do I need to complete another waiver if I waived last year and then my insurance situation changed?
Yes, waivers must be submitted annually. If your health insurance situation changes, please notify us at

Do I need to complete a waiver if I'm taking remote classes and don't want UC SHIP?
Yes. All UCSC students, are automatically enrolled in UC SHIP, including students who are taking remote classes. This applies to undergraduate, graduate, and international students. Even if you don't plan to be on campus, you must complete the waiver each year if you don't want UC SHIP.

Who is Academic HealthPlans (AHP)?
AHP is the health insurance waiver administrator and broker for UC SHIP. We partner with them to make sure your waiver meets the UC-wide health insurance criteria. AHP may contact you if they have questions about your waiver application or voluntary enrollment plan, or if they need more information from you.

How will I know if my waiver was received?
After you complete the online waiver, our waiver partner, Academic HealthPlans (AHP) will review your waiver to make sure your health insurance meets the requirements. You will receive a “received” email message from AHP. AHP will email you again once they have reviewed and accepted your waiver. If there was a problem with your waiver, AHP will email you with next steps.

How do I reverse a waiver so that I get UC SHIP?
Download the waiver reversal form in Insurance Forms & Helpful Links.

Why was I charged the UC SHIP fee even though I successfully waived UC SHIP?
Occasionally your waiver is approved at the same time the UC SHIP fee is added to your bill. These fees will be credited back to your student account within 30 days. If you notice the fee is still on your portal / AIS account after 30 days, please contact us at

Can I still waive UC SHIP if I missed the deadline?
In the summer, students are sent a minimum of 6 notices of the opportunity to waive UC SHIP - 2 postcards sent to the home address - 2 emails - 2 portal messages, plus emails from AHP - with all the deadlines, instructions, and information. The premium fee for UC SHIP is added to your AIS account before the deadline, so that the university can pay the premiums to the insurance carriers under the UC SHIP plan, ensuring that students are covered by insurance on the first day of the quarter. If you missed the deadline, then you have UC SHIP for that quarter. Students who are on UC SHIP are notified of the next opportunity to waive for the following quarter. The waiver questions must be submitted online to AHP, our waiver administrator. Your submission will be audited and you will be notified if your waiver has been accepted. If your waiver has been accepted but the fee for UC SHIP is already on your AIS account, the fee will be credited back to your account within 30 days.

How do I make a complaint about waivers?
If you are experiencing any issue regarding your online waiver including technical issues, error messages, requests for additional information, or appeal, please contact AHP, our waiver administrator, at

What if I need a late waiver?
You must contact to request a late waiver. You will need to submit your waiver by the “late waiver” deadline and you will be charged $50.

When will my 1095-B be sent?
Please see UCOP's Proof of Insurance section

How do I access my 1095-B form online?
Use AHP's Student Guide to Accessing your 1095-B Form Online.

I completed my waiver, why is the reminder still on my To Do List in MyUCSC? 
If you completed your waiver and received an approved email from Academic HealthPlans (AHP), you can disregard the notification on your To Do List and the reminder will automatically be removed on 10/8/23.

How do I add my parent's email address to receive waiver notifications?
In the waiver site under student information you'll see a box called Parent/Alternate Email and that's where you'll input their email address. 


How do I get UC SHIP Paperless Explanation of Benefits (EOB)?

Signing up to receive online claims takes only a few minutes. Just follow these four simple steps:
1. Log in to If you haven't registered yet, you'll need to register to log in.
2. Choose Profile.
3. Select Communication Preferences and then Plan Notifications.
4. Scroll down to Plan Information and select Email under Explanation of Benefits to receive your EOB electronically.

Viewing your claims online is easy and convenient. Here's how:
1. Log in to
2. Choose My Plan then Claims.
3. Scroll to the claim you'd like to view, choose the + sign then View or Print EOB.

If I'm covered by my parent's or guardian’s health insurance, how do I ensure that sensitive communications aren't shared with them?

California law allows students to make a request for confidentiality to their health care service plan (insurer). This request prohibits the insurer from mailing your explanation of benefits and other sensitive personal health information to your parent or guardian's address if you listed it as your mailing address with the insurance company. Use this template to submit a Confidential Communications Request (CCR).


Why was my waiver denied?

If your waiver was denied because you have special medical requirements that necessitate remaining on your current private insurance plan or other extenuating circumstances that may explain or support your request; you can file a grievance to contest your denial. 

Who do I contact with UC SHIP grievances?

How to file a grievance: Log into your secure Health e-Messenger account to complete and submit the Insurance Grievance Form. Go to and login using your UCSC username and gold password. First-time users must read and acknowledge the Student Health Center Notice of Privacy Practices. Select Messages → New Message → Insurance Grievance Form → Complete the online form


What is this fee on my bill?
Here are some common fees you may see:

  • UC SHIP fees for anything that is considered the "patient responsibility," like pharmacy copays or the 15% coinsurance for supplies or laboratory tests sent offsite. These are charged through the Student Health Center to your AIS account.
  • CruzCare fees for services or supplies not covered by CruzCare are charged through the Student Health Center to your AIS account.
  • If you have an outside insurance plan, then you will need to get a billing statement from the Student Health Center, which may be used to submit claims to your insurance carrier.

Please also see the Fee Disclaimer.

How do I pay fees from the Student Health Center?

If the fees already appear on the AIS account, go to the Cashier’s Office at Hahn Student Services to make a payment. If the fees have not yet been sent by the Student Health Center, contact our billing specialists through Health e-Messenger. Go to Messages > New Message > Insurance Billing Questions.

Why does the service date on my portal differ from the time of my visit?
All billing is completed after the visit and depends on billing for outside services, like laboratory tests that are sent out offsite. Therefore, the date that students are billed will always be after the date of service.

Who do I contact with questions about my bill?
Please contact our medical billing specialists securely online through Health e-Messenger. Go to Messages > New Message > Insurance Billing Questions.

Who do I contact if I received a bill for COVID-19 vaccines or testing?

The University of California, Student Health Insurance Plan (UC SHIP) no longer requires a referral for COVID-19 vaccinations prior to May 2021 or for medically necessary COVID-19 diagnostic testing retroactive to March 2020. If you have paid out of pocket for any of these services or have received a bill from a provider for these services, please see the message on the UC Student Health Insurance Plan website to learn about your options. A referral is needed if any other service is performed during the visit. The COVID-19 immunization is a preventative service and as such there is no out-of-pocket cost to the student when the service is performed by an in-network Anthem PPO provider.


Do I need to get a referral for medical care outside the Student Health Center?
You must get an SHC referral for care outside the SHC, regardless of the distance from campus, except for the following: emergency room care and visits to urgent care clinics, pediatric care, obstetrics services, gynecological care and LiveHealth Online virtual visits. However, you will be responsible for paying a deductible and part of the cost through a copay or coinsurance (the amount you’re responsible for after UC SHIP pays its share).

Where can I go with a referral?
Your referral gives you options for off-campus care, including UC Medical Centers. Any of the five nationally ranked UC medical centers (at Davis, Irvine, Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco) or a UC-affiliated facility, doctor, or other health care provider. (Be sure to get a referral before making an appointment.) You also have access to the Anthem Blue Cross Prudent Buyer PPO network doctors and other providers and facilities. This is a nationwide network of more than 50,000 physicians and 400 hospitals. You’ll first pay a deductible (check your Summary of Benefits at Insurance Forms & Helpful Links), then UC SHIP will pay most of the cost, and then you’ll pay the rest through a copay or coinsurance (the amount you’re responsible for after UC SHIP pays its share). 

Will UC SHIP reimburse Anthem providers outside the health center?
Please contact our partners at Anthem to discuss this. Mental health providers can email All other providers can email

Will UC SHIP reimburse Out-of-Network providers?
Please fill out the Disclosure of Allowable Reimbursement form and send in to Anthem Blue Cross. 

For Parents

If parents send a question to the Student Health Center or the Insurance Office, how will they get a response?
Everyone who sends a question will get a response by email or phone.

If my student requires medical services while they are there, do you bill Blue Cross directly? Are you considered a provider?
Yes, the Blue Cross will be billed for students with UC SHIP. Otherwise, the student will be billed and can submit their claim to their carrier.

If we do not purchase campus insurance, where does my student need to go for medical care?
For students with CruzCare:
For students without UC SHIP or CruzCare, they can see a Student Health Center nurse to determine if care is needed off campus.