Texas Tech University

Medical, Repatriation & Evacuation Insurance Requirements

Exchange Visitors are required under U.S. government regulations to have medical, evacuation and repatriation insurance in effect for themselves and any accompanying spouse and dependents in J status. They must maintain the required insurance during the duration of the program.

***Before DS-2019s are issued, the Office of International Affairs
must receive proof of insurance that meets all of the US State
Department insurance requirements listed below***

Insurance benefits must cover at least:

  1. $100,000 per accident or illness for medical expenses (deductible amounts may not exceed $500 per accident or illness).
  2. $50,000 for medical evacuation to your home country.
  3. $25,000 for repatriation of remains.

Insurance policies under these requirements may:

  1. Require a reasonable waiting period for coverage of pre-existing medical conditions.
  2. Require the exchange visitor to pay up to 25% of the covered benefits per accident or illness.
  3. But shall not unreasonably exclude coverage of perils inherent to the activities of the exchange program.

Insurance under these requirements must be underwritten by a corporation rated:

  1. "A-" or above by A.M. Best.
  2. "A-i" or above by Insurance Solvency International, Ltd.
  3. "A-" or above by Standard & Poor's Claims-paying Ability.
  4. or "B+" or above by Weiss Research, Inc.
  5. or be a group program offer by the J-1 program.
  6. or be a federally qualified HMO or CMP.

*Only a policy backed by the full faith and credit of the government of the exchange visitor's country is deemed to meet this rating requirement.

Texas Tech University requires students to be enrolled in the Texas Tech Student Health Insurance plan. In certain situations the Texas Tech student plan can be waived. The Texas Tech student plan may set a higher standard than the above requirements of the U.S. Department of State. The University requirement applies only to enrolled students and not to faculty and staff. Please note that spouses often pay much higher rates for insurance.

Exchange Visitors covered by State of Texas medical policies as employees of Texas Tech University should note that these policies do not cover the evacuation and repatriation requirements of the J Exchange Visitor Program. Other insurance will be needed to meet the Department of State evacuation and repatriation requirements. An exampleof insurance policy that provides only medical evacuation and repatriation can be found: 


Gallagher J-1 Health Insurance is one good resource for information about insurance for J-1 Exchange Visitors and they also offer plans that meet or exceed the J-1 insurance requirements.


The link below is to insurance that covers repatriation and medical evacuation only: 

Add-on Repatriation/Medical Evacuation Insurance

Note: This insurance is only relevant to J-1 scholars that are fully employed and paid by TTU. It does not meet all of the J-1 insurance requirements. It is an add-on policy for J-1 exchange visitors that are fully employed and paid by TTU and covered as an employee by TTU.