Insurance and Medical Benefits

If students have been awarded a fellowship, traineeship, or an assistantship with at least a one-third (33.33%) appointment per term (or an equivalent), they qualify for full medical benefits. In order to activate medical insurance benefits, students contact their department’s/program’s benefits coordinator.

Students who are currently enrolled as UW–Madison students and have paid segregated fees can also use the services of University Health Services (UHS). University Health Services is the health clinic on campus, open to any current UW–Madison student (excluding guest students). UHS offers insurance through SHIP (Student Health Insurance Plan), which is located on the premises. SHIP is a comprehensive insurance plan for UW–Madison students that covers additional health care costs incurred both at UHS and elsewhere. This includes travel and meningitis immunizations, prescription drugs, and oral contraceptives at UHS as well as after hours, emergency room, hospitalization, and other specialized medical services locally and nationwide.

For more information or questions, contact UHS or SHIP.

International students, or visiting J-1 scholars, and their visa dependents residing in the U.S. must meet the mandatory health insurance requirements of UW–Madison. International students must show compliance with these requirements by registering with the SHIP office. Students may register either by enrolling in the SHIP Health Plan or by filing a waiver application (if they satisfy the qualifying conditions). Failure to register by the specified deadlines will result in a $100 late fee in addition to any required SHIP premiums.

Please note: Students do not have to file a waiver if they have employment through UW–Madison and they meet all of the following conditions:

  • They are employed at UW–Madison and are receiving full medical benefits which were effective on or before September 1 (for fall) or February 1 (for spring/summer).
  • They are a member of one of the following health insurance plans: Group Health Cooperative, Unity Health Plans, Physicians Plus, Dean Health Care, or Standard Plan.
  • They are the primary subscriber (not a dependent) of their health insurance plan.

If a student meets all of the above criteria, the SHIP office will file an automatic waiver on his/her behalf.

Additional information regarding SHIP, including enrollment and waiver policies, can be found here.

Graduate students traveling abroad for study or research are encouraged to acquire international health insurance through Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI). All University of Wisconsin students studying/traveling abroad under a UW sponsored program must enroll in health insurance through CISI). Further information about international health insurance can be found here.

See BenefitsAppendix 2 – Payroll Benefits