UTSU’s Got YOU Covered (For a variety of health and dental things)!

The last few weeks of lectures have made me realize something important: I’m in dire need of an eye exam. But, with the cost of tuition and books, campus food, and a Metropass, how am I going to afford an eye exam?  I’m really starting to feel the impact of not being covered by my parents’ health and dental insurance anymore. So, what did I do next?  Well, I did what any student, desperate to stop guessing at what’s written on the chalkboard during class, would do: I decided to check out the UTSU Health and Dental Plan and see what it could do for me.

Don’t get me wrong; I know that I am, by default, covered by the UTSU health and dental plan (my tuition invoice says so), but I’ve never really had a need to look into the details of what this plan offered.  The results were pleasantly surprising, to say the least! Some interesting facts I discovered while browsing the Benefit Booklet:
  • Oral contraceptives and contraceptive devices (YES, that’s right! Condoms AND birth control pills) are covered up to a maximum of $250 per person, per benefit year
  • Optometric eye exams up to a maximum of $75 per person, once every two years
  • Professional services: chiropractor, acupuncturist, registered massage therapist ($35 per visit, up to a max of 20 visits per benefit year)
These are just a few of the things that full-time, undergraduate students are covered for under the UTSU Plan. Reimbursement for most services is also relatively easy.  You simply need to fill out a form and mail it to Green Shield (the actual insurance company) and wait for a cheque to be sent to you.  Unfortunately, the plan does not subsidize costs for eyeglasses or contact lenses (drat!).  But, both domestic and international students are covered, provided you’re enrolled full-time at the St. George or UTM campuses or are a Toronto School of Theology student. However, if you are covered by your parents’ health and dental plan, you have the option to opt out of the UTSU plan and receive a refund for those fees.  You’ll have to do it soon though, as the opt out deadline is October 5, 2012 (for students beginning in the Fall session; there is a different opt out period for Winter session).  Just make sure you have proof of alternative insurance coverage by providing the insurer’s name and policy number when completing the opt-out form online. While part-time undergraduate students and graduate students are not covered by the UTSU plan, APUS and GSU have plans for their respective students.  Check out APUS or GSU for details. As for me, I plan on going to an optometrist ASAP and, while I may not be using the majority of what is covered by the health and dental plan (yet!), it’s nice knowing that a variety of benefits are there for me to use if and when I need them. - Vivian

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