All J-1 exchange visitors and their J-2 dependents are required to have and maintain a minimum amount of health insurance for the duration of the J program. This will be reviewed during check-in at the beginning of the J-1 program and updated insurance must remain on file with the Office of International education that is compliant with J-1 regulations published by the US Department of State.  Below you will find information about the minimum required level of health insurance.

J-1 Minimum Insurance Requirements

The US Department of State requires that all J-1 exchange visitors and J-2 dependents have health insurance that includes all of the following:

ItemCoverage Amount
Medical BenefitsAt least $100,000 per accident or illness
Repatriation of RemainsAt least $25,000
Medical Evacuation CoverageAt least $50,000
DeductibleNo more than $500 per accident or illness

Additionally, the selected insurance provider must have one of the following ratings: an A.M. Best rating of “A-” or above; an Insurance Solvency International, Ltd. (ISI) rating of “A-i” or above; a Standard & Poor’s Claims-paying Ability rating of “A-” or above; or a Weiss Research, Inc. rating of “B+” or above.

Visitors with UVM's Health Insurance

Some J-1 exchange visitors receive UVM health insurance as a benefit of their position at UVM (such as a postdoctoral associate). UVM health insurance does not cover expenses related to repatriation and medical evacuation.  UVM-provided health insurance does meet the the other requirements related to the deductible and overall medical benefits. Those with UVM insurance must purchase a supplemental insurance to meet the repatriation of remains and medical evacuation requirements. See the section below for for companies that might offer this supplemental insurance. 

If you are a visiting scholar, UVM Faculty Services has indicated that while not a common practice, it is possible for UVM health insurance to be provided to a Visiting Scholar if a) the offer for health insurance is included in the Visiting Scholar's invitation letter approved by the Provost's Office; and b) the host department pays the costs of that insurance. Inquiries related to this may be directed to FacultyServices@uvm.edu. You would need to evidence your UVM insurance at the point of check-in with our office if it was not mentioned in the original offer letter provided to us. 

Purchasing Health Insurance

All J-1 visitors will have to purchase either a full insurance or a supplemental insurance. This section offers some help in identifying your plan. 

What to look for in an Insurance Plan

If you do not have UVM insurance and are privately purchasing insurance for your time in the US, we suggest that consider the following as you identify a plan for yourself. Some of these items may not be relevant to your situation, but we offer them as considerations in purchasing your insurance. Remember that health care in the US can be incredibly expensive and we want our visitors to have a coverage that they will feel comfortable with as well as one that meets J-1 requirements. 

  • Does insurance plan have doctors in the Burlington area? 
  • Does the plan cover preventative care? 
  • Does the plan cover injuries caused through "extreme" sports like skiing, snowboarding, etc. if you will do such activities?
  • Does the plan cover pre-existing conditions and is there a length for a waiting period before those benefits begin?
  • Does the plan cover medications?
  • Does the plan cover oral contraception, pregnancy, childbirth, and maternal care?

The basic plans of companies may well not cover many of the items above, even if they meet J-1 requirements. It is important to read the "exclusions" section of insurance policies to better understand the terms and conditions. 

Heath Insurance Companies

UVM cannot recommend a specific insurance company. However, the following list (in alphabetical order) includes ones that have been used by our visitors in the past. It is your responsibility, however, to ensure the plan you select meets your needs. There are other companies as well, but we know it may be helpful to have some links. A simple internet search for "J-1 Health Insurance Plan" or "J-1 Health Insurance Repatriation of Remains and Medication Evacuation Plan" may also offer you some options. 

iStart  (web portal)

Web portal for online services for international students, scholars, faculty & staff.