Physical Health

Maintaining good physical health is an important aspect of a successful international experience. Travel abroad often presents physically challenging settings and activities. Travelers may find that familiar support networks, medications, and health services are not available or are considerably different from the United States. Preparing for these differences is key to maintaining good physical health abroad.

We encourage you to consult with your health care provider about your plan to go abroad and how you will maintain your physical health abroad. Your health is your responsibility, no one else can prepare you better for your own health needs.

Students are required to review and complete the Study Abroad Health Assessment Form Part A: Self-Assessment. Then, students are required to electronically sign Part B: Statement of Understanding in My Study Abroad.

We highly encourage students to review the Study Abroad Health Assessment Form as soon as soon as they identify an interest in studying abroad; understanding personal needs and the potential impact of study abroad on well-being can assist in selecting an appropriate experience or location.

If you have a pre-existing medical condition for which you see a health care provider or receive treatments regularly and you want to maintain care while abroad, you may utilize International Insurance to find and schedule appointments with an in-country provider. Be sure to consult with your health care provider about your plan to study abroad. They can help you develop a health care plan for your time abroad that best suits you. Please visit the Your Health Abroad page on the U.S. Department of State website for more information.

Do not assume your medications will be available or legal in your destination country. If you take prescription medication, reach out to International Insurance to discuss the legality and availability of your prescription in your destination country. If your prescription is not legal or available, International Insurance may identify other medications that are available. It is critical to consult with your health care provider to select the medication that is best for you. Once you and your provider have identified medications, consult with International Insurance to create a plan for obtaining your medication while in-country. For more information about traveling with medication, visit the Traveling with Medication page on the Transportation Security Administration website. Visit our International Insurance page for more information.

Some countries require proof that travelers have received specific immunizations or medications before entry. Before going abroad, travelers should visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Destinations page for country-specific immunization and medications information.

McKinley Health Center offers an Immunization, Allergy, & Travel Clinic where students can make appointments to have a pre-travel health consultation. During the consultation, the health provider will assess your travel destination and the CDC requirements and make recommendations to help determine the best course of care. Consultations are by appointment only. For more information, visit the McKinley Travel Consults and Service page or call 217-333-2701.

Before traveling internationally, complete all yearly health checkups. Routine health assessments such as physicals, eye exams, dental cleanings, etc. are not covered by International Insurance. Knowing your health status before leaving the country can be extremely beneficial in identifying what is wrong if you notice any changes in your health while abroad or for follow-up consultations after returning to the United States.

Visit the Your Health Abroad page on the U.S. Department of State website for additional health considerations before going abroad. If you are studying abroad, you can also visit the Studying Abroad page on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.

Routine dental care such as cleanings, fillings, surgeries, etc. are not covered by International Insurance while abroad. Additionally, most U.S.-based dental insurances do not extend to care practices abroad. It is highly recommended that you have a dental checkup and complete any required dental care before leaving the country. Dental health is extremely important to your overall health and can be very expensive abroad. If you experience dental trauma while abroad, any care received will be covered by International Insurance as long as the cause of the injury is not on listed under the insurance exclusions and limitations. For more information, visit our International Insurance Exclusions & Limitations page.