Cornell's health insurance requirements

Access to health care and adequate health insurance are essential to your health, and to your ability to achieve your goals at Cornell. That's why in 1974 Cornell's Board of Trustees instituted a policy requiring all students to have quality health insurance.

Cornell's criteria for quality health insurance are designed to ensure that all students have access to professional, timely, confidential, and affordable medical and mental health care, and are protected against costs that could undermine their education or financial or personal well-being.

Annual SHP enrollment / waiver process

Automatic SHP enrollment: To ensure that students have health insurance that meets the requirements above, registered students taking 12 or more credits during the academic year are automatically enrolled in Cornell's Student Health Plan (SHP) each year. SHP is a platinum-level plan that meets or exceeds the university's health insurance requirements.

Waiving SHP: Eligible student who have alternate health insurance that meets Cornell's requirements may apply to waive their SHP enrollment. Students who retain their own insurance must submit a waiver application annually.


Student Health Fee (Ithaca students only)

Ithaca students who are not enrolled in a Cornell student health plan (SHP or SHP+) pay a Student Health Fee, giving them the same pre-paid access to care at Cornell Health as SHP members have (most visits / services have a $10 visit copay).

Academic-year students: learn more at Requirements for Ithaca Students. Summer students: please refer to Requirements for Summer Students.

Information just for you

Please visit the following pages to find population-specific requirements and options: