Friday, May 4, 2012

Franciscan University and the Health Care Law

Well.  They have been clear.
Now, they begin to react.  And I quote
Dear Students and Parents,

The following letter will be sent to your home address during the week of May 7, 2012. This email is an attempt to insure that you have received the information concerning our policy about student health insurance for the 2012-13 school year. Thank-you for your attention to this matter.

May 4, 2012

Dear Students and Parents,

You are probably aware by now that the Obama Administration has mandated that all health insurance plans must cover “women’s health services” including contraception, sterilization, and abortion-causing medications as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Up to this time, Franciscan University has specifically excluded these services and products from its student health insurance policy, and we will not participate in a plan that requires us to violate Catholic Church teaching on the sacredness of human life in the future.

You should also know that the government’s mandated maximum coverage amount for student policies will increase to $100,000 for the 2012-13 school year, which would effectively double your premium cost for the policy this fall and will likely increase it even more in future years.

Due to these changes in regulation by the federal government, beginning with the 2012-13 school year, the University will no longer require that all full-time undergraduate students carry health insurance, will no longer offer a student health insurance plan, and will no longer bill those not covered under a parent/guardian plan or personal plan for student health insurance. The current student health insurance plan will expire on August 15, 2012.

We encourage you to decide how you are going to provide for accidents or illnesses requiring visits to physicians, health clinics, or the hospital emergency room while you are a student here. As always, you have a Health Center on campus staffed by a certified nurse practitioner, Monday – Friday during normal business hours, for your health needs. No insurance is necessary to receive basic health-related services at the Health Center, and the visits cost only $5 at the time of service. However, if you are referred off campus for further lab testing, physician specialists, X-rays, etc., you will be responsible to pay for those services.

These are challenging days for everyone as we strive to understand the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act passed into law in 2010. If the federal regulations change in the future, we will re-visit this decision and determine whether a different course of action is appropriate. In the meantime, you need to be aware that this legislation does affect you and your decisions surrounding how to pay for medical care...

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