Information for foreign Bachelor and Master students
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Every person residing in Switzerland is required to have a health and accident insurance or to obtain the relevant exemption (see below) within three months of entry into Switzerland. Compulsory health insurance covers the costs of the medical care in case of illness or accident.
If the terms are not met, or exemption is not obtained, an insurance will be assigned as a matter of course at the discretion of the respective authorities.
Foreign students with a residence permit (B or L permit) for study purposes may be exempted from contracting compulsory health insurance in Switzerland.
This applies in particular to:
All students who do not fall under the above cases will in principle be obliged to undersign a health and accident insurance policy in Switzerland. Please note that USI offers an affordable insurance policy called Academic Care: click here for details.
Forms for exemption request:
The completed form, together with the required documents, shall be sent to the following address:
Istituto delle assicurazioni sociali
Ufficio dei contributi
Settore obbligo assicurativo
Via Ghiringhelli 15a
tel +41 91 821 93 16/19/20, or 91 55 or 92 92
fax +41 91 821 92 99
Web page (in Italian)
Advance payment of fees in case of exemption
In the event of an accident or a health problem, the student that has been exempted from the Swiss insurance will be required to pay the expenses in advance (cash or credit card). Reimbursement - with the appropriate deductions - may be requested by sending a copy of the invoice and the European Health Insurance Card to the following address:
Istituzione Comune LAMal (Gemeinsame Einrichtung KVG)
For information: www.kvg.org
Students who maintain their residence in their home country (residence abroad) - e.g. Italian students living in the border area and returning home every day - and who therefore do not hold a residence permit in Switzerland (B or L) are required to be duly informed on the regulations in their country.
These students may receive emergency treatment in Switzerland, but must then, if they are unable to pay the necessary deposit or if they are not sufficiently covered in their home country, return home to undergo further treatment.
Compulsory health insurance benefits (as defined by law) are the same for all insurers. Students are free to choose their own insurance company.
Monthly premiums vary between CHF 200 and CHF 450 depending on age, place of residence and premium.
It is recommended to compare offers before signing an insurance contract. Some insurance companies offer special packages for foreign students.
In order to provide its foreign students with a more affordable mandatory insurance coverage, USI has agreed a collective insurance policy named Swisscare with the insurer Europäische Reiseversicherung AG.
It offers basic illness, accident and maternity health care benefits similar to the compulsory benefits under the Swiss Federal Law on Compulsory Health Care (KVG-LAMal), but at a much lower cost.
The students who will begin their studies at USI in the academic year 2019/20 will be able to take out this insurance from September 1st, 2019, while for those who got enrolled before the academic year 2019/20 it will become available from January 1st, 2020.
More information: www.desk.usi.ch/en/swisscare
Students enrolled before the academic year 2019/20 who are currently insured with Groupe Mutuel's Academic Care policy will be able to benefit from this insurance coverage until December 31st, 2019 at the latest. Starting from January 1st, 2020, they will have to be affiliated with another health insurer. From that date, they too will have the possibility to switch to Swisscare. More information: www.desk.usi.ch/en/academic-care.
Foreign students applying for a reduction on the compulsory health insurance premiums, according to the legislation concerning foreign individuals must be aware that, by doing so, they automatically show that they lack the financial means required to support themselves in Switzerland during their studies, and therefore their permit B or L may be revoked or negated by the relevant Cantonal authority.