Health and Safety Abroad


Your health and safety are our top priorities while you study abroad. Whether you are participating in a Faculty-led Study Abroad Program, an Exchange Program, or an Affiliated Program you will find important information below concerning your health and safety while abroad.

Study Abroad Travel Warning Policy

Sam Houston State University monitors information relevant to the safety of its study abroad students, faculty, and staff as their safety and security is of the utmost importance. In evaluating the safety of travel abroad on university-sponsored study abroad programs, SHSU gives primary consideration to Travel Warnings issued by the U.S. Department of State and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

SHSU will not approve any student travel to locations currently under U.S. Department of State Travel Warning or locations that come under Travel Warning at any point in the study abroad process, including after the student has departed the U.S. Financial contingency plans should be made to compensate for any penalties incurred due to late program cancellation. Check the status of your proposed location here. No exceptions will be considered.

International Health Insurance

Wherever you go, Sam Houston State University wants to help ensure your health and safety. It is important to realize that most U.S. insurance coverage is not recognized abroad. All SHSU students studying abroad must have an insurance plan that at a minimum will provide emergency medical and security evacuation and medical expense coverage while abroad the entire period of your trip.

Foreign Travel Assistance & Insurance - Exchange or faculty-led programs

If you are planning to participate in an exchange or faculty-led Study Abroad program, you have access to the International SOS program, which provides medical and security services. This service is a great benefit in the event you need help while traveling.

Before your departure, take advantage of International SOS' pre-trip planning services. Check on the latest travel and safety alerts, including health risks and other important news. Sign in to receive health alerts, security alerts, and more. Download the Assistance App, which provides health and security updates. Your Study Abroad Coordinator will provide you with SHSU’s membership number in order to log in.

During your trip, if you experience an issue while traveling abroad, call International SOS for assistance. This service can help you find a doctor or hospital, access prescription drugs, and more. In extreme instances, International SOS can even arrange to have you evacuated. Plus, you'll receive assistance with other issues, such as access to money, legal service referrals, and language and communications assistance.

For more information, visit and enter your membership number. While in the US, you can reach International SOS at (215) 942-8478. If outside the US, see your International SOS membership card for the appropriate phone number.

Should you have any questions regarding foreign travel insurance, please contact the Study Abroad Coordinator at (936) 294-3276.

Students Participating in Other Study Abroad Programs or Independent Travel

Ask your study abroad program provider if you will have insurance coverage while participating in the program; if so, request a detailed description of this policy. The following insurance companies provide health insurance to study abroad students (these options are presented as a reference, and it is not the intention of Sam Houston’s Office of International Programs to recommend any of these companies):

For health information on specific destinations, visit the National Center for Infectious Disease: Traveler's Health page.

Good Health Abroad

One factor that is often over looked when students prepare to study abroad is staying healthy. Illness can dampen an otherwise great experience while studying abroad. Provided below are helpful links to ensure that students remain healthy, or if they should fall ill, know what to do.
Stage 1: Before You Travel
Stage 2: Travel and Arrival at Your New Home
Stage 3: While There
Stage 4: When You Return Home
Travel Health Resources