Health Insurance Waiver

The North Dakota University System (NDUS) is pleased to offer health insurance coverage to NDUS students through United Healthcare insurance company. The NDUS requires all international students to have adequate health insurance in place and verified (see Policy 505) but in some cases, an international student is able to secure a waiver from the NDUS health insurance plan.


Waiver of NDUS designated policy:
International students may be eligible for a waiver of the NDUS designated insurance if they are able to provide proof of comparable coverage.

Waivers are granted in only a few exceptional situations, typically when:

  1. Coverage is already provided through a U.S. employer;
  2. Coverage is already provided through a parent or spouse’s U.S. based employer; or 
  3. The student’s home country provides universal coverage through a national health insurance plan, AND the coverage meets all of the required waiver criteria.


Waiver Criteria: 2021-2022
For international students “comparable health insurance coverage” means that the alternate health insurance plan meets all of the following criteria:

  1. Coverage must be active by the first day of the Student Health Insurance Policy semester: August 16, 2021 for fall semester or January 1, 2022 for spring semester. 
  2. The insurance company must be owned and operated in the U.S. (offshore insurance companies do not meet this requirement).
  3. Plan is filed by an insurance company and approved by the North Dakota Insurance Department; 
  4. Plan Benefits must meet Affordable Care Act (ACA) requirements including all of the following: 
    1. Pre-existing conditions must be covered with no waiting period;
    2. Preventive Care must be covered at 100%; 
    3. Plan must have an unlimited policy maximum;
  5. The annual individual deductible must be $500 or less; 
  6. The co-insurance plan payment must be 75% or higher: 
  7. Benefits must include prescription drug coverage; 
  8. Benefits must include maternity coverage for the insured person; 
  9. Benefits must include both inpatient and outpatient mental health services with no limits; 
  10. Benefits must include substance abuse services; 
  11. Benefits must include coverage for self-inflicted injury or suicide;
  12. Benefits must be unlimited with no per-service, per-diagnosis or per-accident limitations; 
  13. Benefits must include intercollegiate sports injuries for student athletes; and 
  14. The plan must have Medical Evacuation and Repatriation of Remains benefits paid at 100% with unlimited benefits.*   

*Note: If Medical Evacuation and Repatriation of Remains benefits are the only criteria not met by an alternate policy, the student will be given an opportunity to purchase those services through United Healthcare during the waiver process.


Alternative Insurance Options
In the summer of 2018 and on an ongoing basis since then, NDUS and ECI, an independent insurance audit company, researched several policies and performed thorough audits of popular insurance plans. Here is a list, though not comprehensive, of plans/companies that will meet the requirements, or will meet the criteria and only result in proof of purchase of a Medical Evacuation and Repatriation of Remain policy. Additionally, we included a list of plans that will not meet the above listed waiver requirements, and thus, will result in a denial. These lists serve as an example and are not exhaustive; NDUS reserves the right to add or remove plans to these lists as more information comes to light.


Compliant Plans:   

  • Aetna Life Insurance (Royal Thai)  
  • Canada Medicare  
  • Health Canada  
  • ISEP-sponsored insurance
  • Norwegian Health Care System  
  • Saudi Arabia Cultural Mission (SACM) insurance through United HealthCare  


Non-Compliant Plans:
ASPE Insurance •Atlas America • Atlas Exchange • Compass Health Insurance •First Health Network •GeoBlue Navigator Health Plan •Global Benefits Group •Gouda Travel Insurance •IEESIMG Global •Insuby, Inc. •ISO Care • Patriot America •Patriot Exchange •PGH Global •PSI Insurance •Seven Corners •Student Health Advantage •Student Secure •Study USA-HealthCare •Tokio Marine HCC Insurance •USI Affinty •4 Ever Life Insurance Company


Waiver Application
To apply for a waiver, the student will submit a waiver request through ECI Services in the permissible timeframe. If you are unable to log into the site, please visit with your campus contact person.

Waiver application deadlines for the 2021-2022 academic year:

Fall term: September 1, 2021

Spring/Summer term: January 20, 2022

Summer term: May 10, 2022