The Business Office at Watkins Health Services (WHS) is here to help our patients understand their bill, how to pay their bill and to help educate them on insurance and related matters to hopefully make them better-informed healthcare consumers.
Students have the option to exclude specific services or charges from being filed to insurance or mailed to the billing address on file. This means that the services provided are completely confidential. This is called Private Billing. In order to ensure Private Billing, you must speak with someone directly in the Business Office the same day you receive the services. Be sure to let your provider, the lab and/or the pharmacy know that you would like Private Billing when you receive services or products. The Business Office will mark your service as Private Billing and this will prevent it from being filed to insurance. The only way to ensure that a bill stays completely private and confidential is to pay for the service the same day. The Business Office mails billing statements to the billing address provided by the student. If you do not pay for the service the same day you receive it, there is a chance that a bill will be mailed to your billing address. By paying the same day, a bill will not be sent to insurance or the billing address on file.
Please be aware that any payments made to our Business Office may not be processed until the following business day. Financial Holds (“NPY”) may take more than 24 hours to be removed from your KU account. For immediate hold removal please contact Student Account Services directly at 785-864-3322. For your convenience, we offer a wide variety of payment options:
- Using our Online Bill Pay system. This is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You’ll need to know your current balance before making an online payment. Please refer to your most recent invoice for the current balance. Please note: Online payments are not processed by our office until the following business day.
- In person at the Business Office Cashier’s Desk within Watkins Health Center
- By phone with a credit, debit, HSA or FSA card, by calling 785-864-9520
- Mail payments to the following address: KU Watkins Health Services, Watkins Health Center Attention: Business Office 1200 Schwegler Drive Lawrence, KS 66045-7538
- Major credit and debit cards; Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover
- FSA and HSA cards
- Beak ‘Em Bucks
- Checks, cash and money orders
Required Health Fee
In accordance with the KU Comprehensive Fee Schedule, students attending classes on-campus must pay “Required Campus Fees,” one of which is the Watkins Health Fee. Students who are enrolled in five or less hours in fall and spring semesters or enrolled in four or less hours in the summer are only assessed an hourly, pro-rated amount by the University. When a partial-fee-paid student is first seen at WHS the remaining unpaid amount of that semester’s Health Fee is charged. This is true for undergraduates, graduate and doctoral students as well as professional program students, i.e. Pharmacy and Law School students and no exceptions are made. This makes the student “whole” with all other KU students who have paid the entire Health Fee. Paying the full Health Fee entitles the student to be seen by our providers at no charge for the office visit and discounted rates for lab tests, medications and any procedures performed. For questions about the Health Fee please see our FAQ Library. You can also contact the Business Office with questions by calling 785-864-9520.
Holds for non-payment (“NPY”) are applied by Student Account Services to past due accounts. Holds are lifted once the balance is paid in full. A hold restricts a student from dropping, adding or registering for classes. Holds also prevent a student from ordering transcripts and receiving diplomas. The fastest way to have the hold removed is to pay the full balance directly to Student Account Services. Payments can be made to Watkins Health Services, but the hold will not be lifted immediately. Please visit our Holds section of the Policy Compliance page. You may also visit Student Account Services for more information about payment options.
Watkins Health Services offers a Grace Period for recent graduates as well as students not currently enrolled in classes. You may continue to use Watkins Health Services for 90 days after your last date of enrollment. The Health Fee cannot be charged to patients that fall under the Grace Period category. Instead, these students will pay the Non Fees Paid Rate for services at WHS. Please contact the Business Office with questions or concerns regarding rates, billing and charges during your Grace Period.
Because the potential for financial hardship is so great in unexpected health related situations, University of Kansas students are strongly encouraged to have health insurance. We recommend that you have a copy of your insurance card with you at all times. If you do not have a card for your insurance, we recommend this completed Insurance Information Form (PDF) be with you at all times. Upon your first visit to Watkins, we will ask for this information.
WHS will happily file to most insurance policies, regardless of in-network or out-of-network status. In order to file claims, students must provide current and accurate insurance information. Because insurance plans vary greatly, you’ll need to contact your plan directly to see if your insurance will cover the costs of care at WHS. Understanding the basics of your insurance is key, but beyond that, just ask! First ask your parents, then call your insurance company and remember to look at your insurance card. Every insurance plan is individualized. You will find the Customer Service phone number on your insurance card. To help you know what to ask we have prepared this Guide. Not only will you better understand your insurance, you will be a better healthcare consumer!
For general questions about health insurance terminology, view our Health Insurance Terms 101 (PDF). For questions about using insurance at the Health Center, call the WHS Business Office at 785-864-9520.
Tips for Accessing Health Insurance
- Keep your insurance card(s) with you at all times. You may have separate cards for medical, prescription, dental and vision coverage.
- Always have a photo ID.
- Check with your insurance provider to see if Watkins Health Services is considered in-network or out-of-network.
- Be proactive; review your insurance benefits so that you are prepared when you need to use your coverage.
- Know your deductible, co-pay and stop loss amounts.
How to Read Your Insurance Card
WHS In-network Plans
WHS is currently in-network with these health insurance companies:
- United Health Care Student Resources (Kansas Board of Regents plan)
- Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Kansas (and national Blue card program)
- Coventry Healthcare of Kansas
- United Health Care
Regarding HMO Plans: If your insurance is an HMO plan, your carrier may not consider WHS to be an in-network provider. HMO plans typically do not cover out-of-network services. Please be sure to contact your plan directly to verify coverage at WHS. Please note that WHS is not an in-network provider for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City HMO policies..
Regarding Tricare: While WHS is not an in-network Tricare provider, we are able to file claims with Tricare for chargeable services. Tricare will notify the patient and/or policy holder of their determination after receiving our claim. WHS does accept Tricare write-offs and adjustments. However, Tricare offers a wide variety of healthcare plans. Some of these plans issue an EOB (Explanation of Benefits) directly to WHS, while others only issue EOBs to the patient and/or policy holder. It may be necessary for the patient to provide WHS with a copy of an EOB in order for us to apply the Tricare adjustment. Please feel free to call our office with questions about your specific Tricare policy and WHS billing.
International Students and Mandatory Insurance
Health insurance coverage is mandatory for all individuals in F-1, J-1 or J-2 status whose I-20 or DS-2019 is issued by the University of Kansas. United Healthcare Student Resources insurance coverage is automatically included on all F-1 and J-1 students’ Student Account Services accounts, when the student enrolls in classes.
The intent of these insurance requirements is for all international students to have excellent, continuous insurance coverage while studying at the University of Kansas. For more information please visit the International Student Services website or call 785-864-3617. If you have further questions, please contact the Insurance Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Graduate Health Insurance
Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTAs), Graduate Research Assistants (GRAs) and Graduate Assistants (GAs) who meet eligibility requirements qualify for student insurance with a university (employer) contribution. For more information please visit the KU Human Resources website.
Students may purchase voluntary insurance through United Healthcare Student Resources. The Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR), in cooperation with the universities in Kansas, sponsors a voluntary health insurance plan designed specifically for students. United HealthCare Student Resources is the carrier for this plan, which is fully compliant with the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The plan offers comprehensive benefits for a premium which may be considerably less than students may find in other commercial plans. For more information on the KBOR plan, or to enroll, please visit United Healthcare Student Resources.
Students with Other Insurance
Depending upon if Watkins Health Services (WHS) is in-network or out-of-network with insurance carriers, benefit coverage may vary depending on the plan. It is essential for the policy holder to contact the insurance company to see how they will manage any claims received from WHS. Also, the plans should be reviewed for any ‘prior authorization’ or ‘referral’ requirements from the carrier. Provided with the appropriate information on an initial visit, WHS can file claims with insurance carriers, with the exception of Medicare, Medicaid, Medicare Supplement Plans, KanCare, or other state programs because WHS is not a participating provider with these plans. Charges not covered by insurance plans are the student’s responsibility for payment.
Students Without Insurance
If a student has no current insurance coverage, the Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR), in cooperation with the public universities in Kansas, sponsors a voluntary health insurance plan designed specifically for students. United Healthcare Student Resources is the carrier for this plan, which is fully compliant with the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The KBOR plan offers comprehensive benefits for a premium which may be considerably less than students may find in other commercial plans.