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Medical Insurance Requirements for Exchange Visitor Program Participants

The Department of State (DOS) requires all participants of the J‐1 Exchange Visitor Program, as a condition of their J status in the United States, to have and maintain medical insurance that covers the scholar and all accompanying family members for the entire period of stay in the U.S. The plan must cover all participants for accidents, sickness, medical evacuation, and repatriation. Currently, regulation 22 CFR 514.14. requires:

  • Minimum coverage must provide at least $100,000 per accident or illness;
  • Maximum of $500 deductible per illness;
  • Maximum of 25% coinsurance;
  • Minimum of $50,000 provision for medical evacuation;
  • Minimum of $25,000 repatriation coverage.

This coverage must be maintained throughout your stay in the United States. It is the responsibility of the J‐1 scholar to have coverage that meets these requirements.

Some Scholars will receive health insurance as part of their employment package with NC State. Most Scholars will have to purchase insurance independently, and make arrangements before they arrive in the U.S., or soon after their arrival.

Exchange Visitor “Professors” and “Research Scholars” who do not obtain their own insurance before arriving at NC State should have the funds available to purchase it for themselves and their dependents no later than the day they arrive on campus. Coverage for the family members of non‐ students is very expensive ‐ $3,000 or more per year for an adult couple with additional costs for children. An Exchange Visitor or accompanying dependent who willfully fails to maintain the level of insurance coverage established by the DOS while will be in violation of these regulations and will be subject to termination from the Exchange Visitor program. In the U.S., certain kinds of elective medical care, such as eyeglasses or dentistry, are ordinarily not covered by insurance, and they are very expensive. To the extent possible, exchange visitors should take care of those needs before leaving home or purchase supplementary vision or dental insurance.

Examples of some agencies that provide insurance plans that meet the required coverage are listed below.

Agencies That Provide the Required Coverage

Please note that the plan you choose is up to you (you are not required to use a plan on this list), but the plan you choose must meet the minimum requirements listed above.

Cultural Insurance Services International, 203-399-5556,
Gateway Plans, 1‐877‐808‐7434,
Harbour Group, 1‐800‐252‐8160,
OMA Limited ‐ Boston Mutual, 1‐800‐767‐0700,
Rust and Associates, Phone: 1‐800‐336‐0747,
TW Lord Associates, Phone: (770) 427-2461