When Concordia student Anthony Issa needed new glasses, he assumed the full cost would be covered by his insurance. “My eye exam cost me about $100, and the senses and glasses cost me $450, which was already a huge discount. In total I paid over $500 – I got $120 back from my Concordia insurance.
Students’ experiences with the university’s healthcare system have varied in success. Although the Concordia Student Union Health Plan has seemed complicated to various students, its benefits can be crucial in certain circumstances.
Here’s a hands-on guide to that plan, along with testimonials from students who’ve needed it.
On average, Concordia students pay hundreds of dollars in fees for their student health insurance. Analyzing information from, for example, an arts and science undergraduate student taking five courses through Concordia’s tuition calculator, many differences arise depending on the student’s particular circumstances.
If the student is a resident of Quebec, they will pay approximately $75 in fees during the fall semester (September to December) and $150 in fees during the winter semester (January to August).
If a student is Canadian but outside Quebec, the number remains the same. However, the coverage of non-guaranteed services by the union plan depends entirely on the health insurance of the province of residence of the student. Costs climb to around $900 for international students. Numbers also vary by program and student course load, but the most important factor is where the students come from.
For residents of Quebec, health insurance includes not only any service offered by the Régie de l’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ), but also additional coverage offered by the CSU health insurance plan, paid for when students pay their tuition fees at the beginning of the session. .
For students with their own healthcare plans, provided by a workplace or parent, there is an option to opt out of the union plan. Students who withdraw from their plans will be reimbursed by the university, as listed on the CSU website. The current deadline to opt out of the plan for the Winter 2022 semester is January 24. Students can visit this website for additional information about the potential withdrawal of their plan.
Canadian students from provinces other than Quebec can also access the CSU health insurance plan, but they must meet certain criteria. These include paying their tuition and taking at least three credits during the semester, although students who are not taking classes, but are still enrolled at Concordia, may still receive reduced benefits through Maple, a virtual telehealth service.
Once these criteria are met, the insurance covers the following: 80% coverage for vaccinations, 80% for psychologist services (max. $750 per year), $75 for glasses and contacts, $30 for eye exams, $150 for lasik surgery, $20 for each visit to a physiotherapist, dietician, chiropractor or osteopath (max. $400 annually), 50% coverage for basic dental services and up to 70% for preventive dental services (max. $750 annually), financial compensation for related travel incidents, as well as ambulance and medical equipment coverage.