We partner with Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI) to provide international health insurance for all study abroad participants and program leaders. Students on programs inside the United States will be enrolled in a CISI study away plan that will cover them while they are away from Madison.
CISI coverage can be used for emergencies, accidents, and illnesses that occur while abroad. If you have pre-existing physical or mental health conditions, you may also work with CISI prior to departure for continuation of care while abroad.
The cost of CISI coverage is included in your program fee. It will be in effect for the duration of your program; exact coverage dates vary. Typically, coverage will start 1-2 days before the official program start date and terminate 1-2 days after the program’s conclusion. If you plan to travel independently before or after your program dates, contact CISI directly to purchase additional coverage through an individual-separate-policy extension. Note, this policy differs from the coverage provided during your time abroad. We encourage you to compare the coverage offered.
Here are some of the many ways our past participants have utilized CISI. Be sure to refer to the policy for specific details and coverage amounts.
- Medical: If you need to visit a clinic or hospital while abroad for an illness or injury.
- Medications and Labs: Some prescription medications, x-rays, or lab work may be covered by CISI (please note that birth control is not covered by CISI insurance).
- Counseling: Continue counseling or start seeing a counselor while away.
- Trip Cancellation: Coverage if you need to cancel participation within 30 days of the insurance start date due to a serious personal situation.
- Trip Delay: Did your passport get stolen the night before you are set to depart? CISI provides trip delay insurance that covers meals, lodging and traveling expenses if your travel is delayed more than 12 hours.
- Dental: Some emergency dental care may be covered.
- Optical: In the event of an accident or medical emergency, some coverage is available for broken/lost glasses or contact lenses.
- Personal Items: There is a limited personal liability/property policy included with CISI for jewelry, watches, personal computers, and cameras.
If you are a citizen of a country other than the United States and will remain/study in, or travel to your country of record (the location of your permanent residence), the insurance provided for you is the same as the “study away” insurance provided to U.S. citizens studying on domestic U.S. programs. You may want to explore alternative or additional international health and medical insurance that will cover your needs both while in and during any period of transit to/from your country of record. This may include participation in a national healthcare plan or coverage provided under a personal healthcare plan in your country of record. If you have questions about the coverage of the “study away” plan, please speak with your Study Abroad Advisor.
If you are a student studying in Spain for 90+ days, you will be enrolled in a special variation of the insurance policy that meets the requirements of the Spanish consulate and overseas authorities. This policy allows students to qualify/maintain the Spanish visa.
All other students participating on an international program will automatically be enrolled in Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI), the university’s international health, medical and repatriation insurance policy.
All enrolled participants will receive a confirmation email directly from CISI prior to departure. This email contains login information to the CISI portal as well as links to a printable insurance card. Login prior to departure, so that you can familiarize yourself with CISI resources and print your insurance card, which includes the membership ID and contact information.
If you have a pre-existing condition that will require continued care while away, you can contact CISI to discuss arranging care while away ahead of your departure.
CISI Frequently Asked Questions CISI COVID-19 FAQs
UW-Madison study abroad
For general questions about CISI or to speak to a UW-Madison study abroad staff member, please call our main office during business hours, Monday – Friday, 8:00AM-4:30PM CST: 608-265-6329. For emergency situations, please call our emergency phone.
CISI partners with AXA Assistance Company to provide worldwide 24/7 assistance. If you connect with CISI while away, you will be working directly with both CISI on the coverage of the care received, as well as AXA Assistance Company on the actual location of where you receive care.
Anytime you communicate with CISI, it is helpful to have the following policy and ID number available so they can quickly access your specific coverage details.
CISI “Study Abroad “Policy Number: STB009987910
CISI “Study Away” Policy Number: STB009987910-STUDYAWAY
CISI “Spain Unlimited” Policy Number: STB009987910-S
For questions about your benefits and coverage:
CISI Claims Department (9-5 EST, M-F)
Phone (non-emergency): (203) 399-5130 or toll-free at (800) 303-8120
To contact CISI/AXA regarding a specific health condition related to your experience abroad, contact AXA, CISI’s 24/7 assistance provider:
In the U.S., call (855) 951-2326
Worldwide, call (443) 470-3043 (collect calls accepted)
CISI Policy Information
Policy for study abroad programs with start dates from July 1, 2023 to June 30, 2024:
Policy for study away programs with start dates from July 1, 2023 to June 30, 2024:
- Policy Details Brochure & Claim Form (Policy # STB009987910-STUDYAWAY): This is the main document outlining the specific coverage details related to CISI insurance for participants, students, faculty, and staff of UW’s domestic (i.e. in the US) study away programs. Study Away programs are domestic trips that are 100+ miles from where the insured(s) currently reside. We recommend reviewing this policy in advance of departure to familiarize yourself with the plan and know how it can best support you. Note: This plan can also cover International Students on programs in their home country.
Check with your current health insurance provider to see if you are covered internationally. Even if you are not covered internationally, we encourage you to arrange for continuation of your regular health insurance coverage while you study abroad in order to avoid gaps in coverage or difficulty with re-enrollment. The study away CISI plan is considered secondary insurance; students are also advised to remain on their primary insurance while studying away.