Mandatory Health Insurance Requirements

All international students in F-1 status are required to purchase SF State sponsored insurance during their period of enrollment at SF State.

F-1 International students are required to satisfy the insurance requirement through purchase of the SF State sponsored insurance offered by Relation (Previously known as Ascension).  There are two exceptions to this policy:

  1. Students on a government-sponsored scholarship which provides compatible insurance coverage as a part of the sponsorship.  To clear hold: E-mail a proof of your government scholarship that includes reference to your health insurance to OIP at  Please include your full-name and SF State ID in your e-mail.
  2. Students receiving insurance coverage through an employer-sponsored plan in the United States (i.e. receipt of insurance is a part of the U.S. employment compensation through your spouse): please contact Mr. Michael Beatty, Risk Manager at for instruction to clear the insurance hold.  Include your full-name and SF State ID in your e-mail.

To ensure that all international students provide sufficient evidence of coverage, an International Health Insurance Hold must be cleared before you can enroll in courses for an upcoming term. 

Purchase SF State Sponsored Health Insurance

New and current F-1 students:

Buy Insurance

Hold clearance wait time:
Please allow at least 2 business days for the hold to be cleared.  It is not necessary provide the proof of purchase to OIP.

F-1 students who are on OPT:

How to purchase health insurance with Ascension:
  1. Complete the 2017-2018 OPT Enrollment Form – F-1 Students (PDF, 181KB).   Select the coverage that you wish to purchase, and calculate the total charges.
  2. When you are done, mail the enrollment form with payment to the address indicated on the form.  You can also fax it to (310) 394-0142.  If you have already received the EAD, please provide a photocopy of the EAD (front copy only) with your enrollment form.    
Please note: 
  • If you have either applied for OPT or are currently on OPT, you will not be able to purchase health insurance online.  You must complete the paper form and fax or mail to Ascension. Ascension can not accept application and credit card information by email.
  • You must make your purchase within 30 days of your previous insurance end date.  For example, if your current insurance will end on August 11, you must purchase new coverage by September 11.

Understanding and Using Your Health Insurance

Watch the following video to learn how health insurance works in the U.S., what to do when you are sick, and services provided by Student Health Services (SHS).

(Video length: 3:14.  This video does not include any dialogue)

Watch the "Understanding and Using Your Health Insurance" video on QQ 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the name of the SF State sponsored health insurance?

The name of the insurance company is GeoBlue.  For questions, contact Relation Customer Service team at 1-800-537-1777 or via email at

Can I purchase health insurance at Student Health Services (SHS)?

No, SHS does not accept payments for insurance.  Insurance must be purchased at Relation’s website. 

How do I get my Insurance card?

Relation will email insurance cards to students two weeks prior to the start of term.