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Parents Health Care

Do We Need to Purchase Health Care for Our Student?

Stanford requires all students to have health insurance coverage. To help you meet this requirement, we offer Cardinal Care - a comprehensive health insurance plan covering a wide range of services.

Stanford will automatically enroll students in Cardinal Care at the beginning of each academic year. Once enrolled in Cardinal Care, coverage begins September 1 and ends on August 31. Students will be covered the entire academic year, during breaks as well as any quarter he or she is not enrolled in classes.

The on campus services at Vaden Health Center include:

  • primary care medical visits
  • counseling and psychological evaluations
  • short-term therapy
  • prescription drugs
  • health and wellness programs

Cardinal Care complements the on-campus services by covering off-campus health care for a wide array of services such as:

  • major medical care
  • annual eye examinations
  • diagnostic X-rays and laboratory tests
  • mental health and substance abuse treatment

View Cardinal Care Plan Details

Waiving Cardinal Care

Domestic students can choose not to enroll in Cardinal Care if they can provide proof of other health insurance coverage. These students must complete the health insurance waiver in Axess at by the deadline of September 15 for the autumn quarter.

Stanford University requires all international students to enroll in Cardinal Care. These students may request an exception on an annual basis to the mandatory Cardinal Care insurance by having their insurance company complete an Insurance Coverage Certification form. The insurance policy must cover the entire academic period of September 1–August 31 with benefits that meet or exceed minimum standards. More details on waiving Cardinal Care (International Students).

Do we need to purchase Dental and Vision Care?

Dental and Vision Care Options

Cardinal Care covers one routine eye exam per year and injury to natural and sound teeth, but not other types of dental care. The Vaden Health Center Insurance office provides information about dental plans and a discount program through OptumHealth Allies.

Other Benefits

Decision Power Healthy Discounts

This program supports your student's good health with valuable discounts on health-related products and services, such as fitness club memberships, vitamins, eyewear, weight management programs (including Weight Watchers®), and more. These discounts translate into cost-savings for you.