Concordia University: group insurance costs cause trouble

Concordia’s Graduate Student Association (GSA) demands change of insurance provider to provide more affordable coverage for international students, but blames university management for getting in the way .

According to the association, foreign students at the Montreal university would have paid the highest insurance costs per student in Quebec, but also in Canada.

This amount has increased twice in the last six years, encouraging the association to look for another supplier that would be more affordable.

After a referendum held in the spring of 2022, nearly 70% of the association’s students accepted the new coverage proposal, which would save more than $4 million over the next two years.

“Approval of the result of this referendum by Concordia University’s board of directors should be a formality, but management seems to be heading towards a challenge to the right of students to choose their own insurance plan,” however indicated. association by press release, Thursday.

The University, however, recalled for its part that the choice of insurance provider and the parameters of the coverage program had been determined in 2021 after a call for tenders in which the association participated.

“The program chosen, based in particular on the elements claimed by the GSA, offers many additional benefits compared to other insurance plans, including 100% coverage of hospital costs for foreign students while this coverage is student at 80% in most other programs, ”said Vannina Maestracci, spokesperson for the University, by email.

The supplier who is now claimed by the association had not been qualified during the last bidding process, according to it.

“The student associations participated in all stages of this call for tenders and endorsed the final decision as to the choice of supplier, the coverage offered and the price thereof,” she added, recalling that student associations do not manage insurance programs for international students in Quebec.

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