Health Insurance

Student Health Services (SHS) provides most of the basic health services that students will need at SF State. This is covered by the Student Health Fee which is included in your tuition and fees paid each semester.

California State University and Student Health Services strongly recommend that students have health insurance to cover the cost of any medical care that is needed outside of SHS, which may include after-hours care, emergency care, and medical conditions requiring specialized tests, treatment or hospital care.  See more information below and on our FAQs page.

International students (F-1 and J-1 visas) and all students living in University housing are required to have health insurance. F-1 students can find the Mandatory Health Insurance Requirements at the Office of International Programs (OIP) website.  J-1 students will receive the insurance requirement information with the Acceptance packets.

Note: DACA students also need to complete a PRUCOL form as part of their purchase of an insurance plan.

Domestic Health Insurance

The following is an overview of four health insurance options for domestic students:

Most students can remain on their parent's plan until the age of 26. This is typically cheaper than buying a separate health insurance plan of your own. Some insurance plans do not provide medical coverage outside of your home county or state.  If you are moving to SF from another county, check with your health insurance carrier to see if you can use your insurance in SF County.

Kaiser SoCal members should call the Kaiser Member Services number on the back of your Kaiser card and ask how to obtain a Northern California Kaiser ID number to use in SF.

Some jobs include health insurance coverage as a benefit. Check with your employer about the type and details of their health insurance plan, if they offer one.

Medi-Cal is a public health insurance program in California that provides free or low-cost medical services to people with limited income. You can apply for Medi-Cal year-round, either online, by phone, or in person at a participating SF county office or medical clinic. The enrollment process can take several months, so start now!

If you are currently enrolled in Medi-Cal in another county and are living in and spending most of your time in SF and other Bay Area counties, consider transferring your Medi-Cal to your county so you can access medical services locally.

Covered California is the state's health insurance marketplace where you can shop for a health insurance plan and access financial assistance if you qualify.

Enrollment is limited to a specific open enrollment period (October - January), unless you have a qualifying life event (recent loss of health insurance, getting married, having a baby, or moving to California from out of state)


Here's how to navigate and use your health insurance!


Health Insurance at SHS FAQ

No, some insurance plans may reimburse you for the cost of certain medical expenses at SHS such as lab tests, assistive devices like crutches, and medications. Please check with your insurance plan.

  • Check your sfsu account 5 business days after your appointment for any charges due. 
  • Pay charges at SFSU Bursar (or online). 
  • Confirm with your insurance plan that they will cover your charges.  Ask about their reimbursement process for your claim. 
  • Most insurance companies require you to mail in an itemized receipt AND a completed insurance claim form to request reimbursement. 
  • If you need to send in an itemized receipt, login to myHealth and click on Billing Statements. 
  • It may take up to 10 days after your payment for your statement to appear in myHealth.
  • Review your statement to ensure it shows that you have paid the charges.  
  • If correct, print out and send in with all other required documents.
  • If not correct, either wait a few more business days before checking again or email for assistance.
  • Whenever you use any medical services in the community (outside of SHS).
  • Examples:
    • Medical clinics
    • Emergency Rooms
    • Urgent Care Clinics
    • Pharmacies
    • Laboratories
    • X-ray facilities

In the Community: 

  • Check your insurance plan website for a list of providers who accepts your insurance plan.
  • Bring your insurance card with you!
  • In case of emergency, call the number listed on your insurance card and ask for the closest emergency room the plan is contracted with.
  • At the time of your visit, present your insurance card to the front desk staff to verify that they DO accept your insurance.
  • Ask the front desk staff about their billing process.

Health insurance is important to access care. SHS is unable to provide:

  • after hours, overnight, weekend, or long-term medical care
  • specialists, special tests, urgent care, emergency services, or hospitalization
  • specialty medications, procedures, etc.