While health insurance is not required, WSU highly recommends that all students carry it. Insurance helps you pay for your medical and mental health bills by covering some of the cost of clinic visits and procedures. 

Health care can be expensive, so having insurance can help ensure that any medical bills that may come from an unexpected illness or accident don't derail your education plans. 

Insurance Coverage Options

  • If you are under age 26, under the Affordable Care Act, you may stay on the insurance policy of an eligible parent, guardian, or other family member as a dependent until you turn 26. You can find more information on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services website. 
  • Students who do not qualify as a dependent on another person’s insurance and who are not eligible for one of WSU’s plans can also purchase a plan through the Washington Health Benefit Exchange. If you meet certain financial criteria, you may be eligible for Apple Health (Washington Medicaid), which is accepted by CHS. 

CHS will never refuse service to students who don’t have health insurance. If you don’t have insurance and need to be seen, let us know when you make your appointment.

Cougar Health Services Vision Clinic Insurance Benefits

(Benefits listed below are for WSU International Students, Graduate Assistant Students, and Health Sciences Students who choose to opt in)

  • 1 routine eye exam each academic year (August 16th to the following year August 15th) covered at 100%.  There is no deductible or copay.
  • $200 hardware benefit each academic year.  Hardware includes eyeglass frames, eyeglass lenses, contact lenses, and prescription sunglass lenses.
  • Medical eye appointments in the CHS Vision Clinic are covered at 100%.  Deductible does not apply.

If receiving care outside of Cougar Health Services Vision Clinic:

  • 1 routine eye exam each academic year covered up to $65.00 (up to $100 beginning 8/16/2023).
  • $200 hardware benefit each academic year.
  • Medical eye appointments are subject to a $500 deductible.

What is a health insurance navigator?

We know insurance can be confusing, especially if you’ve never dealt with it before. 

Our health insurance navigators are specialists who can walk you through the nuances of health insurance and help you better understand your plan's coverage. You can contact a navigator at student.insurance@wsu.edu or by calling 509-335-3575. 

Our navigators can help you: 

  • Explore options for health insurance coverage 
  • Enroll in WSU student insurance plans and the Washington Health Benefit Exchange 
  • Understand and navigate the medical system and insurance benefits 
  • Apply for financial assistance for routine and urgent medical care, even if you’re uninsured 

For assistance with the Washington Health Benefit Exchange, you can also contact Washington Healthplanfinder Customer Support.