2020 Fall Immunization and Insurance Compliance FAQ

Immunization Compliance

What is different about immunization compliance?

Students who will be in the Philadelphia region at any point during the semester must meet all Immunization requirements before coming to campus. Students who will NOT be in the Philadelphia region at all during the semester (regardless if they are doing remote learning or not), will not have to meet the immunization requirements.

Can we get our immunizations at SHS?

SHS has limited appointments available. You can receive required immunizations from a number of sources such as you primary care doctor, urgent care clinics, chain pharmacies, etc.

How do I submit my immunization records?

It’s done electronically. Go to https://shs.wellness.upenn.edu/imemfinfo for details.

It is taking longer than expected to gather immunization records due to hospitals having limited availability for appointments. Any chance the deadline will be extended?

There is no penalty for missing the deadline. But records that are submitted after the deadline may experience a delay in processing.

What if I have questions?

Please feel free to contact us via secure message at https://shs.upenn.edu or call us at 215-746-3535.

Insurance Compliance

I’m an international student and I will be at Penn remotely in the fall, do I need to apply for a waiver?

Yes. However if you are living and leaning outside of the US we will take that into account when we confirm your coverage.

I’m an international student and I will be learning remotely in the fall outside the US and my country has a national health service not private health insurance. How do I submit a waiver?

You fill the waiver with “Insurance Company Name” as the name of your country’s health system.

If I return to campus in the spring term, will I be able to enroll in the Penn Student Plan?

Yes. Student who were remotely learning and have returned to Philadelphia will have the option of enrolling in PSIP. This includes both international and domestic students.  

I am studying remotely for the fall semester. Do I still need to have health insurance with Philadelphia coverage?

If you are learning remotely, we will accept any adequate insurance plan in effect where you are living.

What happens if I come back to campus in the spring term?

You will be expected to carry insurance that meets the standard waiver criteria. This is list at https://shs.wellness.upenn.edu/inreq/#criteria.

Who do I contact with questions?

Please contact the Insurance Office at 215-746-3535 or email us at vpul-shsinsur@pobox.upenn.edu.

What if I am taking an extra semester to graduate and would graduate in December 2020?

These students are listed as being a student in the Fall 2020. As such you will be eligible to renew your PSIP for 20-21 by enrolling online at https://studenthealth.bgenroll.com starting on July 1 (and before August 31). If you graduate in December 2020, you will only be responsible for the Fall term half of the premium and the coverage will expire on January 31, 2021.

Other Areas

Why am I still being charged the Clinical Fee if I am learning remotely? Can it be waived?

This mandatory fee is assessed to all students and supports Penn Wellness services, including Campus Health, Counseling and Psychological Services, the Student Health Service, and the Office of Alcohol and Other Drug Programs. In 2020-2021, the fee also funds public health efforts essential for protecting the Penn community against the spread of COVID-19, including testing and contact tracing. It cannot be waived.

What Wellness services will be available remotely?

Telehealth appointments are available from SHS, CAPS, and AOD (In-person appointments are also available at SHS and CAPS). Campus Health is continuing their active disease surveillance, case investigation, contact tracing, online sleep education program (Refresh), online sexual health education program (Sex Well Online), and Live Virtual Guided Meditation. Also, CAPS offers workshops and programs around a variety of topics, as well as virtual yoga.

What does the Clinical Fee cover?

Students pay for medical care at the Student Health Service (SHS) through a combination of pre-paid fees plus fee-for-service payments for selected items. All full time matriculating students are charged the Clinical Fee, $615 for 2020-2021.

While the University also requires all full-time students to maintain adequate health insurance or enroll in PSIP, all students are eligible to be seen at SHS through payment of the Clinical Fee regardless of their health insurance coverage. Many of the services at SHS are fully covered by the Clinical Fee, without additional charges to or co-pays from students. These services include primary care visits, nursing care visits, allergy desensitization, travel consultations and nutrition consultations.

SHS does charge for other services and procedures, most notably diagnostic lab tests performed on-site, specialty care, immunizations, prescription services and durable medical equipment.

Why is the insurance extension for former students (May and August graduates who were enrolled on PSIP) priced higher than the normal PSIP I was on before?

The University worked incredibly hard to negotiate a lower rate for students; this is as low as we could get. Former students on this plan will get the same excellent coverage and benefits normally provided by PSIP. However, they are no longer students so they don’t get the benefit of any subsidy and the spreading of the risk across a large pool. We negotiated the premiums down as much as we could.

Updated 7/21/20