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When You're Traveling

Inside the United States
Across the Globe
On University Business
Visiting Another UC Campus

Inside the United States
While traveling in the United States, you can locate an Anthem network provider in any state using the Anthem website. UC SHIP benefit levels are the same throughout the United States.

You don’t need referrals if you:

  • Receive care in an emergency room [if Anthem Blue Cross (Anthem) determines it was a true emergency] or at an urgent care clinic.
  • See a pediatrician or obstetrician.
  • See a gynecologist.
  • Note for UC Hastings students: During summer months and breaks when the SHC is closed, you can visit an Anthem Blue Cross primary care clinician without a referral. However, be sure to get a referral from your primary care clinician in the Anthem Blue Cross Prudent Buyer network if you need to see a specialist.
  • Note for UC Irvine students: During winter break when the SHC is closed, you can visit an Anthem Blue Cross primary care clinician without a referral. However, be sure to get a referral from your primary care clinician in the Anthem Blue Cross Prudent Buyer network if you need to see a specialist.
  • Note for UC Merced students: A referral is not required to receive medical care outside the SHC or when you are away from campus.
  • Note for UC Riverside and UC Santa Barbara students: You must get an SHC referral for care outside the SHC if you are within a 50-mile radius from campus.

Across the Globe
UC SHIP provides worldwide coverage. Whether traveling or living outside the country, you and your dependents who are covered under UC SHIP can use the BlueCard Worldwide program when you need care. You may also be eligible for travel accident coverage if you are traveling on UC business.

Here's what to do before leaving the United States:

  • Call Customer Services at (800) 810-BLUE (2583) to find out exactly how you are covered abroad.
  • Call the SHC to get information about coverage for international vaccines, and determine your eligibility for the additional UC Travel Accident Policy.
  • Download the StudentHealth app from the App Store or Google play.
  • Download the BlueCard Worldwide app from the App Store or Google play.
  • Headed somewhere with a spotty internet connection? Make a record of important SHC phone numbers and pack your UC ID cards. Consider printing a copy of your Anthem ID card from your StudentHealth app. It contains the identification numbers you need to confirm your Anthem coverage.

If you need care outside the United States
While traveling abroad, remember that you will need to contact the SHC for a referral before you receive non-emergency care. Chances are, you will have to use a non-network provider and pay out of pocket for care, then file a claim with UC SHIP for reimbursement. Keep in mind that UC SHIP covers most out-of-network care at 60% of maximum allowable charges. Emergency care is covered at 100% of maximum allowable charges. Any amount above the allowed charges is your responsibility.

Benefits provided abroad are coordinated by BlueCard Worldwide. To find a BlueCard Worldwide provider, go to the BlueCard Worldwide website and enter "XDP" as your Alpha Prefix.

On University Business
If you are a student who is traveling on university business, for example doing research in a foreign country, check to see if you are eligible for travel accident insurance administered by the UC Office of the President. It is provided at no additional cost to students and is effective in addition to UC SHIP. Both UC SHIP and the travel insurance cover evaluation and repatriation of remains. [By the way, “medical evacuation” and “repatriation of remains” are fancy terms for saying the plan covers transportation related to your medical care, including transportation required to bring your remains home if you die while traveling (not a pleasant thought, but you’re covered in this worst-case scenario).]

To be covered under UC travel insurance, you must register for travel accident insurance before you leave on your UC-sponsored trip to receive the coverage. Registration is simple and takes less than five minutes.

Visiting Another UC campus
If you are currently a registered student with UC SHIP coverage, the SHC at each University of California campus gladly offers you, as a member of the UC Family, access to that school's SHC. Please check with the SHC that you plan to visit for more information about fees and filing claims with UC SHIP.