The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Thursday October 28th

Opinion: Seniors, use your health insurance while you have it

As the year is drawing to a close, there is probably a checklist of things you need to do, especially for those who are graduating. While many of you seniors are putting together the last few pieces of your honors theses or deciding who gets your graduation tickets, health care often gets overlooked.

Many students only have health insurance because of the school’s mandate that every student must be covered. Oftentimes, women as well as other demographics at this university would not have access to birth control unless through their health insurance. Unfortunately, vulnerable demographics might be entering a time in their lives when they are not covered by any health insurance.

Birth control can mean anything from being on the pill to getting an IUD that can protect you from an unwanted pregnancy for three to 12 years after insertion. As birth control prices continue to rise, it is important to note that many health insurance options provided by a university or job allow you to have birth control without a copay or out-of-pocket expense. Of course, every private health insurance company is different, but as of 2014, Student Blue offers a $0 co-pay when using generic oral contraceptives. Likewise, IUDs are offered through Campus Health Services as well, where consultation and insertion can be free.

We urge graduating seniors to take advantage of Campus Health for birth control and other important checkups while they are still required to have health insurance. Health care appointments can be stressful, especially for people with marginalized identities, but we appreciate that Campus Health asks for patients’ pronouns on its paperwork.

Take care of yourself, and consider trekking up the hill to Campus Health for low-cost and respectful health care.

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