Health insurance enrollment down

By Jessica Marrella
April 14, 2005

Jess Webb / Photo Editor

Of the 1,400 students that are eligible to be enrolled in Cabrini’s health plan, only 60 are enrolled this semester. This number has dropped from the 80 students that were enrolled in the fall.

Cabrini’s health plan costs $713 a semester. This price includes coverage for hospital room and board, physician, surgical, nurse and ambulance expenses as well as the expense of x-rays and diabetes treatment among other things. Under Cabrini’s plan prescriptions are $5 for generic brands and $10 for brand name drugs.

Some of the exclusions to the plan are oral contraceptives unless documented by a physician that they are needed for medical reasons. Also excluded are acne medication and self-inflicted injuries as well as trips to the dentist and eye doctor.

The average cost of health insurance for a student on a campus plan is between $1,200 and $1,500 a year. Although the cost of Cabrini’s health plan fits within that bracket, for some students the price just isn’t right.

According to Wayne Macdowell, a junior English and communication major, “the services are good, but aren’t worth the price.” This is a common opinion found among Cabrini students.

Another common opinion of students is that misdiagnosis within health services is common. When one student went to the nurse’s office for abdominal pain and was told that he had gas when in fact his appendix had ruptured.

Another unfortunate occurrence was when a former student suffered a heart attack in Xavier. He was treated accordingly at the hospital but every time after that when he went to the nurse for indigestion he was sent to the emergency room.

Some students feel that Cabrini was washing their hands of the situation but Chris Friel, a junior religious studies and philosophy major, feels that health services had the student’s best interest. Considering that there is no full time doctor or night staff, “health services doesn’t have the means to take care of us that way,” said Friel.

For many students, like Janey Ciszek, a junior early education major, it was more convenient to stay on their parents plan than to switch to Cabrini’s. “It was easier to stay on my parents plan and I wasn’t aware that Cabrini had its own plan,” Ciszek said.

Sue Fitzgerald, the health services coordinator, also feels that the reason many students are not on Cabrini’s plan is because they are still covered under their parents.

Brian McGeeham, a senior history major, finds himself in a unique situation as far as insurance. McGeeham is a commuter student who is married and has a child. His wife and child are insured which is all that matters to him. Since Cabrini requires that all full time students have health insurance, he enrolled himself in Cabrini’s plan and pays an extra $1,426 a year. McGeeham feels that Cabrini’s plan is not fit for him. According to McGeeham, “I don’t eat here so I’m not going to choke on their food and I don’t live here so I’m not going to slip in their shower.” If it weren’t for Cabrini’s requirement of health insurance, McGeeham said that he wouldn’t have any.

Friel will be enrolled in Cabrini’s health plan starting this summer because she will no longer be covered under her fathers insurance. Friel said confidently, “it covers the minimum, which is all that is necessary for students.”

Posted to the web by Ryan Norris

Jessica Marrella

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