An Eagles’ lesson in health insurance

Alana Tinsley

Many students on Georgia Southern’s campus have health insurance either through their parents or provided by this very school, but that doesn’t always mean that students understand everything that comes with their insurance.

In fact, several Georgia Southern students are unaware of just what their health insurance has to offer them.

Insurance confusion

Ben Barfield, junior civil engineering major, has only visited GS’ Health Services Center twice and he has never ran into a problem with his insurance, but doesn’t know much about his own.

“I feel like I don’t know a lot [about health insurance]… things like variety of providers, how much it costs and coverage types,” Barfield said.

Ana Ordoñez, sophomore manufacturing engineering major, is puzzled by her insurance as well.

“I didn’t understand how [health insurance] worked, because I have to pay for the fee in my GS account but I send off the receipt and I eventually get a refund,” Ordoñez said.

Students who can’t afford insurance, could potentially qualify for Medicaid if their household income is below a certain price point. Eligiblity in your state can be checked through

College students and grads can also get a health insurance quote from Agile Health Insurance, where some rates start as low as one dollar a day.

There are hundreds of different health insurance plans on the market such as: Aetna, Cigna, Kaiser Permanete, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Amerigroup, International Medical Group (IMG) and Humana.

In order to know what kind of coverage you have, you should look up your policy information and become familiar with it, because it is impossible for your doctor to know what is or is not covered by each plan.

Deloach explains

Brian Deloach M.D., medical director at GS, has some suggestions to help figure out your way around your health insurance.

“Use the phone number on the back of your card to call if you have specific questions about your coverage. Become familiar with what ‘co-pay’ is, what your ‘deductible’ is, and what an ‘explanation of benefits’ letter is,” Deloach said.

Co-pay refers to an established amount for a service after you have paid the deductible. A deductible is a set amount of money that the insured must pay before an insurance company will pay a claim.

Finally, an explanation of benefits letter is a statement sent by the insurance company to covered individuals explaining what medical treatments/services were paid for on their behalf.

While trying to understand your coverage, it does not mean that your health insurance covers everything, or that you will never have any out of pocket expenses.

“Know what kind of insurance you have and keep your insurance card on you at all times,” Deloach said.

While health insurance maybe the last thing on any college student’s mind, staying informed about your options can save your life.