Health Insurance and Medical Attention

All participants of CIEE Internship USA, Professional Career Training USA, Placement Plus, and the 1-Year Graduate USA Visa Program are required to have health insurance for the duration of their program. Most participants will receive health insurance as part of their CIEE program benefits. To learn more about what is and is not covered, please read below.

Please note: Most participants of the 1-Year Graduate USA Visa Program will not have insurance provided by CIEE; your insurance will be arranged separately. Contact your international representative for more information.


CIEE insurance is through one of America’s premier providers: Aetna, which is accepted by more than 672,000 health care providers around the country. If you need medical attention, you should, whenever possible, choose a health care provider who is part of Aetna’s network; otherwise, you might have to pay the full cost of treatment out-of-pocket. For help in finding a doctor who accepts your CIEE insurance, call us at 1-888-268-6245, email us at, or use our doctor finder tool.


Do I always need to carry my insurance card?
Yes. Your insurance identification card, which is located on your confirmation of insurance form, is your proof of insurance. Doctors will ask for this card whenever you receive medical attention. It is important to carry it with you at all times in case of an emergency.

What is covered by insurance?
As a general rule, most accidents and sudden illnesses are covered, whereas routine examinations, vaccinations, routine dental, or vision services are excluded. For more information – including limits, restrictions, copays, and more – please read your summary of benefits.

What's not covered by insurance?
Routine examinations, vaccinations, regular dental treatment, and vision services. You should take care of these needs before you travel to the United States. In addition, expenses related to pre-existing conditions are not covered. If you suffer from a chronic disease such as asthma or diabetes, you need to ensure that your health insurance at home covers you for any costs related to these sicknesses while in the United States.

Still confused? We can help!
CIEE has a special team of insurance experts to assist you with information about your health insurance policy. Contact them by email:


In the U.S., you can get medical attention in various ways. This includes:

  • Hospitals with emergency rooms for serious or life-threatening illnesses and injuries
  • Immediate-care clinics (also called “walk-in” or “urgent care” clinics) for smaller problems
  • Private physicians for routine or more specialized care

The quickest and most convenient way to get medical treatment for nonemergency situations is to go to a walk-in clinic or urgent care center. These facilities offer:

  • Convenient weekend and evening hours
  • Shorter waiting times than a typical emergency room
  • Lower costs
  • No need for an appointment

Please note: If you have a serious emergency and need immediate assistance from the police or an ambulance, dial 911 from any telephone. Only use this number in a true emergency – if, for example, you feel your life is in danger.


  • Emergency rooms and hospitals are for life-threatening situations. If you go for a nonemergency, you may have to wait several hours to be seen and could incur substantial costs.
  • Ambulances are for serious medical emergencies only.
  • If you need to go to the hospital or clinic, but your illness or injury is not life-threatening, take transportation such as a cab, a bus, or the subway. You can also ask a friend to drive you.


Prescription medications
If you currently take medication, bring enough to last the duration of your internship or training position. Medications should be properly packaged and labeled before leaving your home country. Please also check with your local embassy about any specific documents you may need to enter the U.S. with your medication.

Please note: Your prescription from home will not be valid in the U.S., so if you lose or run out of your prescription medication you will need to visit a U.S. doctor. Contact CIEE at 1-888-268-6245 for assistance.

Dental care
Your CIEE insurance policy has limited dental coverage. For this reason, CIEE recommends seeing a dentist before leaving your home country. For complete dental coverage information, visit the CIEE insurance website.

Mental health
If you require counseling or the services of a psychiatrist, call CIEE at 1-888-268-6245.