A proposed federal regulation might change the administration — and significantly increase costs — of student health plans at universities nationwide, including the UNC-system plan that was introduced last semester.
University health insurance plans have come under scrutiny for having a greater profit margin than the typical individual health insurance coverage, while not providing students sufficient coverage.
The proposed regulation released last week by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services would categorize student health plans as individual health insurance coverage.
Other components of the regulations include mandating that university plans cannot discriminate against students based on pre-existing conditions.
The 60-day comment period, which allows external organizations the opportunity to comment, began Feb. 11 as the proposed regulation was published.
“This bill maybe means we can’t have a hard waiver plan, which would make our premiums double,” said Bruce Mallette, the senior associate vice president for academic and student affairs for the UNC system, at last week’s Board of Governors meeting.
A hard waiver requires students to show evidence of credible coverage to be enrolled in system schools.
Mallette said the board is going to review the proposed regulation.
“Thus, the final regulations are not yet known, and the full impact of the federal rules on future premium pricing of the UNC-systemwide plan is not yet known either,” he said.