Cardinal Care Insurance

Health Insurance

Hopkins students are covered under Cardinal Care, which is Stanford’s student healthcare plan. They can go to doctors in Monterey and Santa Cruz counties who take Cardinal Care, and will be covered under Tier I, which is the same as going to Vaden Health Center. Students are responsible for any copays, which are listed on the back of their insurance card. In addition, for all Hopkins students based at the station, the biology department pays the quarterly Campus Health Services. This allows you to visit Vaden if needed without any additional paperwork or approvals.

Vaden and Axess typically send out emails detailing updates in our health insurance every July, so be sure to read and keep those emails.

*NOTE: If you would like to waive Cardinal Care, the deadline is September 15 of each year. You also need to log in each year to accept or waive insurance.


What is my basic medical coverage and related co-pays?

Students can access primary care at Vaden under the Campus Health Service Fee, and many of the services available to students at Vaden Health Center are covered at no additional cost.

  • Students can also access primary care outside of Vaden for a $25 copay (if enrolled in Cardinal Care).
  • If a student enrolled in Cardinal Care sees a Vaden clinician and they determine they need to see a specialist, they will refer the student to Stanford Hospital and Clinics or Menlo Medical, and a $35 specialist copay will apply.
  • If a Vaden clinician or a specialist to whom a Stanford student has been referred orders lab tests, the lab test and analysis will be covered at 100% under Cardinal Care.
  • For Hopkins students enrolled in Cardinal Care, you can go to any specialist in the Health Net network with a $35 copay.  You don't need a referral from Vaden, and if you experience any challenges with this please let us know.
  • Other Cardinal Care medical benefits include:
    • If you need care urgently, you can go to any Urgent Care Center, and the copay is $50
    • If you need emergency care, you can go to any Emergency Room (ER), and the copay is $100
    • If you are admitted to a hospital as a result of an ER visit, the $100 copay is waived and replaced with a $100 deductible and a $500 copay for hospitalization
    • For prescriptions, the copays are $10 for generic; $35 for brand and formulary; and $50 for specialty drugs

If graduate students need financial assistance at any time with copays, deductibles, or other unanticipated medical expenses, they can request help through the Emergency Grant in Aid Program, managed by the Financial Aid Office:

How can I find an in-network, local medical provider who doesn't charge concierge fees?
  • Go to the site:
  • Next choose “Select provider”
  • Filter by location: you may enter Monterey (or other city) or zip code
  • Additionally you need to filter by plan: enter “Stanford student EPO/PPO” (this is in the drop down menu)
  • Once you enter this you will be brought to a screen with type of doctor: start with "primary care provider” There is a box below this field where you may select “Only doctors accepting new patients”. This will help screen out those who are not available. 
  • If you select the Stanford student EPO/PPO at the Cardinal Care website, you should not get any physicians who require concierge fees.  Confirm when you call to schedule an appointment.
How do I find a mental health professional in the Monterey area?

Students at Hopkins (with or without Cardinal Care) can contact CAPS for support in connecting with a therapist or psychiatrist in the area. We can provide names of local providers for students with Cardinal Care, or Referral Coordination support for students with other insurance. There is also lots of information about how to connect with mental health supports, navigate insurance, and search for providers on our Referrals website. Contact Meredith Parker, PsyD at mparker2 [at] (mparker2[at]stanford[dot]edu) or  (650) 723-3785. The list of providers currently accepting new clients changes bi-weekly and Dr. Parker can give you the most up to date version. 

If you need immediate mental health support for yourself or a friend, CAPS offers a 24/7 Confidential Hotline: (650) 723-3785. Any student regardless of insurance can call this hotline. You can also call that same number to set up an appointment at the CAPS office or a phone conversation for assessment/referral purposes. A Confidential Support Team for sexual assault also exists: (650) 725-9955

Similar to Johanna and her team at Vaden, the CAPS team is very invested in Hopkins students getting the care they need. They invite us to contact them with any issues or questions. 

After I graduate, how long do I have Cardinal Care?

Cardinal Care is an annual plan with coverage that begins on September 1st and continues through August 31st of the next year.  For students who graduate in 2020-2021, their Cardinal Care coverage will end at midnight on August 31st. They should plan to have other insurance coverage in place as of September 1st.

Mental Health Services

Effective 2022: New WPO Therapy Option for Students 

In an effort to increase mental health resources for Stanford students this year, CAPS is offering an additional therapy option for students via a new, one-year pilot program called WPO.  Through this program, students can receive up to 5 free virtual therapy sessions (or in-person sessions if wanted and available) with a therapist, paid for by CAPS. WPO clinicians can also provide single-session therapy right at the time of your call.

To access this new therapy service, call:

  • 1.866.212.6113 (enrolled Stanford students currently located in the U.S.) 

If you need to take advantage of Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) at Vaden, it works the same as for health care. CAPS offers a wide range of services and sees students for various reasons: homesickness, cultural adaptation, bipolar/mental illness, etc. Cardinal Care's mental health care administrator is Managed Health Network, MHN, a Health Net company. MHN administers Cardinal Care’s mental health benefits through a local and national network of mental health clinicians. The greatest benefits (and lowest cost) to students occur when care is first sought at Vaden's Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) unit, but students may also access care from an MHN provider directly. For more information, visit the Health Net website. 

For Monterey area providers, contact Meredith Parker, PsyD at mparker [at] (mparker[at]stanford[dot]edu) or (650) 723-3785. The list of providers currently accepting new clients changes bi-weekly and Dr. Parker can give you the most up to date version. 

Dental Benefits

Cardinal Care's dental benefits are administered by Delta Dental of California. Coverage includes diagnostic and preventive services at 100% with a one-time $25 deductible when an in-network Delta Dental PPO dentist is used. Most dentists accept Delta Dental; search here to find one near you. 

Vision Services

One annual vision exam is completely covered by Cardinal Care (excluding copay), and no referral is needed. Insurance does not cover the fee for a contact lens fitting, but this is usually around $50 for most offices. To find a provider, log onto HealthNet, select Stanford Student PPO, and filter for Optometrist and/or Ophthalmology.

Campus Contacts 

Health Insurance/Cardinal Care:

Vaden Health Center
(650) 723-2135

Johanna Infantine

Manager, Student Health Insurance Program

johannai [at] (johannai[at]stanford[dot]edu) 

CAPS/Mental Health Services:

Meredith Parker, PsyD
CAPS Hopkins Liaison

mparker2 [at] (mparker2[at]stanford[dot]edu)

To submit a ServiceNow Ticket to the team: (select Student Health box)