Annual Insurance Selection Requirement
Northwestern requires all degree-seeking students to carry comprehensive health insurance coverage. To ensure that this requirement is met, the University annually enrolls students in the Northwestern University Student Health Insurance Plan (NU-SHIP) by default. All incoming students must either confirm or waive their NU-SHIP enrollment by completing the Insurance Coverage Selection Form in CAESAR by October 1. NU-SHIP coverage is mandatory for students holding F-1 or J-1 US visas.
How Do I Confirm NU-SHIP Enrollment?
- Follow these step-by-step instructions if you intend to keep NU-SHIP as your insurance coverage for 2021–22.
- To ensure that coverage is effective as of September 1, please confirm your NU-SHIP enrollment in CAESAR by mid-August.
- It takes approximately 4–5 business days after you confirm your NU-SHIP enrollment for your enrollment information to be processed in Aetna Student Health's system.
- If you do not confirm, your enrollment information will be sent automatically to Aetna Student Health's system after the October 1 deadline.
Financial aid recipients who may need assistance to cover the cost of insurance premiums should contact the Office of Undergraduate Financial Aid to discuss options.
How Do I Waive NU-SHIP Enrollment?
- Follow these step-by-step instructions if you wish to apply for a NU-SHIP enrollment waiver for 2021–22.
- To be granted a waiver, you must be covered under an alternate insurance plan that meets Northwestern University's comparable coverage requirements.
- To apply for a waiver, you will have to provide complete information about your alternate insurance plan, including the insurance company name and US telephone number, policy holder name, policy and subscriber numbers, and the benefits provided by your plan.
- Upon submission of your waiver application, the NU-SHIP default charge will be reversed in your student account within 1–2 business days.
- Students who do not apply to waive NU-SHIP enrollment by October 1 will stay enrolled for the entire 2021–22 plan year and be responsible for paying the annual premium.
It is a violation of University policy for degree-seeking students to waive NU-SHIP enrollment if their alternate insurance plan does not meet Northwestern's comparable coverage requirements. If it is determined that a student’s plan does not meet all requirements, the student will be re-enrolled in NU-SHIP and held responsible for the applicable charges.
Please note that the above procedures pertain to medical insurance coverage only. Please do not confuse them with student immunization requirements, which are completely separate.
NU-SHIP Premium and Coverage Details
Selected features of NU-SHIP coverage are highlighted here. For full details, see the Student Health Insurance website.
- NU-SHIP coverage is active from September 1, 2021, through August 31, 2022, concurrent with the regular academic year.
- The 2021–22 NU-SHIP premium is $4,170 and is charged to the student’s account on CAESAR.
- The plan has a $250 deductible and a $2,000 annual out-of-pocket maximum; once the deductible is met, NU-SHIP covers 80 percent of the cost of in-network care for medical services. In-network mental health services are covered at 80 percent (without having to meet the annual deductible). For a summary of benefits, see the Student Health Insurance website.
Frequently Asked Questions
I am a domestic student studying remotely from my home state.
Do I need to confirm (or waive) NU-SHIP enrollment?
NU-SHIP is an Open Choice PPO plan that provides coverage nationwide. If you would like to retain NU-SHIP coverage, you should confirm your enrollment online in CAESAR as soon as possible. Alternatively, if you have comprehensive medical insurance coverage where you will be residing, you may log into CAESAR to apply for a NU-SHIP enrollment waiver by the October 1 deadline.
I am international student studying remotely from my home country.
Am I eligible to waive NU-SHIP enrollment?
If you will remain in your home country and have coverage there, you will be able to submit a waiver application in CAESAR. See below for guidance on completing specific fields in the waiver application:
- When asked for a subscriber ID in Section A, please specify whatever number is used to identify your enrollment in your insurance coverage plan.
- If the coverage is only for you and not linked to any other family members, indicate "self" as relationship to insured.
- For insurance company state, select any US state. (If you select Illinois, the abbreviation is IL.)
- For insurance type, select PPO.
- When asked for plan type in Section B, choose any option from the dropdown menu.
- For deductible and annual out-of-pocket maximum, specify $1 (or any low dollar amount).
- HSA/HRA contribution may be left blank.
- All your answers in the plan requirements section should be yes. If they are not, the waiver will be denied even if you fully completed Sections A and B.
We encourage you to visit the Student Health Insurance webpage to find more insurance information and answers to other FAQs. If you have any additional questions, please contact the Student Insurance Office by email at email@example.com or by phone at 847-491-3621.