Picture yourself out for a cruise after class. You’re on your Harley cruising along, and a car pulls out right in front of you. The next thing you know you’re in the back of an ambulance headed to the hospital for a three month stay. Lots of things are racing through your mind, and then you realize you have no insurance and, funny thing, neither did the car driver. No school means loans will be due shortly after you leave the hospital; you can’t work, etc.
This is an example of what can happen, and one reason used by college officials around the nation, in their decision to make health insurance mandatory for students.
Eastern has a mandatory Student Health Fee which allows one to get treated at the Rockwood Clinic, but this would not cover the example above.
An article from CNN.com referred to universities with their own hospitals as another reason for mandatory insurance. It was noted that charges in the $600,000 range had to be written off of Ohio State’s medical center books due to under-insured students.
There were other school medical facilities mentioned, but no costs cited to them.
While this is a valid point for the campuses with medical facilities, for the many more without, this reasoning naturally has no bearing. Costs associated with elective school insurance plans were also cited, and there are various concerns here.
First, the number of students willing to participate in an elective school-sponsored plan is usually cost prohibitive to the school being able to offer a plan. The students willing to participate are, more often than not, the ones in dire need of medical services. Therefore, the plan is constantly paying out, costs will have to increase, and this becomes a vicious cycle.
We all have to realize, and a lot of us already have, that there is one person you can ultimately rely on in life and that is you. The more of us willing to do this, the less big brother has to do it for us (and the less he will feel the need, hopefully).
Going to college is another day in life, you either make sure your ducks are in a row, or you have someone doing it for you. If not, you accept the consequence.
It’s unfair if everyone has to be burdened for the choices of a few, and that is what mandatory insurance policies will do if instituted by colleges. Making their case by saving the underinsured from huge bills infringes on the individuals taking responsibility (or lack thereof) for their actions.
As for the university medical centers getting stuck with the bills, they have a valid argument for not wanting to incur the costs, but it’s still an infringement on students already covered.
Mandatory insurance is not the answer, but some colleges are instituting it, and students should fight this.