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New Student Checklist

Incoming F-1 or J-1 international students may have questions about the International Student Health Insurance Plan (ISHIP) offered by the UW. ISHIP is comprehensive medical insurance, which covers an array of minor and major medical conditions and many other things, such as dental and vision care. You can find a complete list of coverages by viewing the Benefit Booklet on the LifeWise website.

Here is a list of things you can expect as you approach your first quarter at the University of Washington.

1. Enroll in ISHIP when you register for quarterly classes

Enrollment in ISHIP occurs at the same time you register for quarterly classes on your MYUW account. At this time, you will be given the option to purchase the quarterly or annual ISHIP coverage and add any dependents you want under your ISHIP coverage.

Annual coverage: You may choose annual coverage if you would like continuous coverage to the end of the academic year. This is beneficial if you plan to take a break quarter in the U.S. and want to retain ISHIP coverage. Please note you may not change your coverage to quarterly at a later quarter.

2. Receive your LifeWise Welcome Email

You will receive a welcome email from LifeWise Assurance during the first week of the start of your coverage.

  • For autumn quarter, this would happen the week of September 1st if you have already registered for classes.
  • If you plan to register for autumn classes later in September, you won’t receive your welcome email until the week after you register for classes.

The LifeWise welcome email will:

  • Provide a link to your LifeWise insurance ID number.
  • Have instructions on how to create your LifeWise portal account.
  • Include guidance on how to activate your dependent’s coverage if you elected to add dependents to your coverage.
  • Ask you to confirm your local mailing address to ensure you receive mailings from LifeWise.

3. Receive your LifeWise insurance card

Your LifeWise insurance card will be sent to your local mailing address in your MYUW account. Your card will arrive either the second week of the start of quarterly coverage or two weeks after you register for classes.

If you have not received your insurance card by the second week of start of coverage, you may:

4. Go to your Campus Clinic for medical care

When you need medical care, you can be seen at your campus clinic. Make sure you bring your physical LifeWise insurance card or your digital insurance card on the LifeWise Mobile App to use as proof of insurance during your first visit. This will allow your medical provider to properly bill LifeWise for the cost of your care.

You may access your campus clinic:

To search for other in-network clinics please use the Find a Doctor tool on the LifeWise website.

5. Reach out to the ISHIP Office if you have any questions

If you have additional questions or need help with your ISHIP coverage, you can reach an ISHIP representative by logging into the ISHIP Virtual Front Desk. You can also email the ISHIP Office at