Insurance Information 2017-18

Diane Mesa
Lead Insurance Advocate

Astrid Shannon
Insurance Advocate

Michelle Michaels
Insurance Advocate

Phone: 831.459.2389
Fax: 831.459.4050

Mon, Wed, Thurs, Fri 8:00a to 5:00p Tues 9:30a to 5:00p


Health Center

Our Billing and Insurance Advocates are happy to assist you with all your medical billing and insurance needs.


USI Letter Regarding SSN

UC SHIP’s enrollment vendor, USI Insurance Services (formerly Wells Fargo Insurance Services), will make 3 attempts per year via postal mail to obtain important information that is not on file with your campus registrars’ office. You may also contact USI Insurance Services at 800-853-5899 Mon-Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST to provide the requested information.

Example letter

ORIENTATION SLIDES - lots of great information

Insurance Requirement

The University of California Regents mandate that all students be covered by a health insurance plan. All full- and part-time undergraduate and graduate students are automatically enrolled in and charged for the University of California Student Health Insurance Plan (UC SHIP) unless they choose to submit an online insurance waiver confirming they have acceptable health insurance coverage.

University of California Student Health Insurance Plan (UC SHIP)

What is UC SHIP?

UC SHIP is an affordable health insurance plan tailored to the health care needs of UCSC students. The medical plan features year-round, worldwide coverage using the Anthem Blue Cross network, and includes prepaid access to care at the UCSC Student Health Center for illness or injury. This means students can receive convenient, high-quality on-campus care when they are sick or injured without having to be concerned about cost or availability of the care they need. Preventive health care visits are covered at the Student Health Center at 100%. As part of UC SHIP, students have access to a comprehensive prescription drug formulary administered by Catamaran. The UC SHIP Plan provides optimal coverage for services on campus and in the Santa Cruz community, and peace of mind for both parents and students. A referral is REQUIRED for ALL off-campus care, with the exception of urgent or emergency care. The dental plan is provided by Delta Dental PPO; the vision plan is provided by Anthem Blue Cross. See plan brochures on the left navigation bar of this webpage for detailed benefits. To directly access the UC SHIP website please see

UC SHIP fees 2017/18

Undergraduate Students

For 2017-18 the undergraduate plan costs just $961 per quarter, paid three quarters per year. The spring payment covers both spring and summer quarters, so coverage is year-round -- an affordable $240 per month for convenient, accessible, worldwide health insurance coverage, dental coverage, and vision coverage.

Graduate Students

For 2017-18 the graduate plan costs just $1476 per quarter, paid three quarters per year. The spring payment covers both spring and summer quarters, so coverage is year-round -- an affordable $369 per month for convenient, accessible, worldwide health insurance coverage, dental coverage, and vision coverage.

Coverage Dates for Insurance Plan

  • Fall 9/23/17 – 1/4/18
  • Winter 1/5/18 – 4/1/18
  • Spring/Summer 4/2/18 – 9/21/18

Withdrawals and UC SHIP

Students who have successfully waived out of the Student Health Insurance will not be charged for UC SHIP. If you have not waived UC SHIP, you may be charged the quarterly fee for UC SHIP. If you are withdrawing within the first two weeks of the quarter, students can request that the UC SHIP fee be reversed which will be granted by the Student Health Center Insurance Office. Requests for UC SHIP cancellation will not be granted if the insurance was used. For more information, please contact the Insurance Office by email at

Student Health Insurance (UC SHIP) and Student Health Services: If you are enrolled in UC SHIP in the current quarter or the quarter immediately preceding your withdrawal, you may be eligible to purchase voluntary insurance coverage for a limited period of time. 

Voluntary Insurance Enrollment

Some students not taking classes but still affiliated with UCSC may qualify for UC SHIP if they were on UC SHIP the previous quarter:

  • Students on Planned Educational Leave (2 quarters limit)
  • Graduate students on Filing Fee Status (1 quarter limit)
  • Students who have graduated (1 quarter immediately following graduation only)
  • Dependents of eligible undergraduate or graduate students


Considering Waiving UC SHIP?

IMPORTANT!  UC Santa Cruz requires that all students have a primary care provider within 30 miles of their school address (on or off campus). Many students with Medi-Cal​ ​​or HMO insurance cannot meet this require­ment. If you cannot identify a provider within this 30 mile radius, you may not qualify to waive UC SHIP. If you are receiving financial aid, please check with the Financial Aid Office to see if UC SHIP or CruzCare is included.

Students and their parents should first ask: "Are We Really Covered?" Consider the following:

  • If you have an HMO plan such as Health Net, Aetna, as your insurance plan. Before waiving UC SHIP, please note that the HMO plan only covers you for medical care from your designated primary care provider, or upon referral from this provider. It is not automatically a portable plan. In order to seek non-emergency care in Santa Cruz County using this plan, the student must select a new doctor in our area and transfer their care to that person.
  • ​​If you have Kaiser as your insurance plan. Before waiving UC SHIP, we ask you to consider the distance from campus to Kaiser facilit​ies​. Kaiser is now in Santa Cruz County, but most services are in Scotts Valley and Watsonville.​ For families who live close enough to drive their student, or if the student has a car, Kaiser may be a​ good​ option. For families ​and students without transportation, ​you may want to consider ​UC SHIP.​ 
  • Most HMOs and PPOs, including Kaiser, PacifiCare, and Health Net, will NOT cover care provided on campus at the UCSC Student Health Center, requiring students to travel off campus even when care could be provided at the Student Health Center. The UCSC Student Health Center and UCSC health care providers are not contracted with any insurance companies. Before making a decision to waive UC SHIP, check with your insurance carrier to verify whether or not charges incurred at the UCSC Student Health Center are covered.
  • Most HMO and PPO plans will only cover laboratory tests, X-rays, or care by specialists when the order or referral is made by the student's primary care physician. Students coming to UCSC from other locations may have to return home to have care authorized.
  • Many students enroll in UC SHIP to supplement their existing coverage for services at the Student Health Center and in the Santa Cruz community that HMO plans do not cover.

Accepting or Waiving UC SHIP

To accept enrollment in UC SHIP no action is necessary; you will automatically be enrolled and billed for the fall quarter premium in August and coverage will begin 9/23/17.

To waive out of UC SHIP for 2017-18 you must complete an online waiver. Note: Once accepted, the waiver is in effect for the current quarter and the remainder of the academic year. A new waiver must be submitted at the beginning of each academic year.

If you have acceptable health insurance coverage and are sure that you want to waive UC SHIP, follow these instructions:

  1. Review and complete the Online Waiver Questions Worksheet before beginning the waiver process.
  2. SPECIAL ALERT!!  Beginning with the current winter waiver period, the online waiver process requires that you upload a document (i.e. front and back of your insurance card or your benefits booklet).  Please identify a file to upload before you begin your online waiver.
  3. Navigate to the UCSC Waiver Site and complete the online waiver. You must complete and submit the online waiver on the website once you open it. You cannot close it or go back and edit it. Please make sure you have all the correct information before you fill out the waiver.

Once you have submitted your online waiver you can email USI at with any questions.

If you are covered under someone else's insurance plan, you have privacy rights. See this website on how to Keep It Confidential ( to learn more about your privacy rights.

Waiver deadlines for 2017-18:

  • Fall: 9/1/2017
  • Winter: 12/1/2017
  • Spring: 3/1/2018

UC SHIP and Financial Aid

If you wish to discuss your options for covering the cost of UC SHIP premiums, you may contact the Financial Aid Office at 831-459-2963.

If you attempted to waive UC SHIP and were denied, and want to see if you qualify for financial aid, the Financial Aid Office will need to know that our office has reviewed and denied your request to waive UC SHIP.

The Student Health Center cannot advise you on the various ways to cover the cost of UC SHIP. Please discuss this question with Financial Aid and be sure to let them know that your request for a waiver has been denied.

CruzCare - Prepaid Access to the Student Health Center (available only for students who successfully waive UC SHIP)

If you choose to waive UC SHIP coverage, consider purchasing CruzCare, an inexpensive prepaid access  for busy students seeking on-campus health care. For $100 a quarter (applied automatically to the student's account), CruzCare provides unlimited Student Health Center visits for care of illness or injury, including in-house Health Center laboratory tests and X-rays. For students waiving UC SHIP, CruzCare is the best and most cost effective way to take advantage of the on-campus convenience and college health expertise available at the UCSC Student Health Center. Because the cost of a simple visit to a physician exceeds $100 for a common student health problem like a sore throat, urinary tract infection, or sprained ankle  CruzCare pays for itself with a single visit to the Student Health Center.

What is covered by CruzCare:

  • Unlimited Health Center visits for care of illness or injury
  • Unlimited in-house Health Center laboratory tests for illness or injury
  • Unlimited in-house Health Center X-ray exams for illness or injury

What is not covered:

  • Off-campus care, including laboratory tests sent to off-campus labs
  • Administered medications, supplies, and immunizations
  • Special or elective procedures and tests
  • Prescriptions and over-the-counter medications
  • Routine clearances and health maintenance visits including physicals and women’s health annual exams
  • Off-campus referrals for specialist care

How do I enroll in CruzCare? Is there a deadline?:

  • Enrollment in CruzCare is part of the online waiver process. If you were unable to enroll through the online waiver – or you wish to cancel CruzCare, please submit the CruzCare Enrollment/Cancellation Form  via fax or email by the deadlines posted below.
  • Once you enroll you will be billed each subsequent quarter.
  • Only registered students who successfully waived UC SHIP are eligible to enroll in CruzCare.
  • The deadlines to purchase for the 2017-18 academic year (summer excluded):
    • Fall: 9/1/2017
    • Winter: 12/1/2017
    • Spring: 3/1/2018

*NOTE REGARDING LATE CRUZCARE ENROLLMENT: We will accept one late CruzCare enrollment during your academic career and you will be enrolled for the remainder of the academic year (summer excluded).