There’s a lot to love about college: sudden independence, late nights with new people who turn into lifelong friends, and endless opportunities to learn and grow. It can also keep you very busy – a hectic schedule probably means checking various departments on campus is the last thing on your mind. But if there’s a service you use, make it your student health center.
Not only will this put your health in your hands (which may be a new thing for you), but it will help you stay on your A-game throughout college. And if this is the first time you have access to a one-stop-shop for all your health needs, you might not even know what’s out there. In fact, when the SELF team discussed their biggest health-related regrets, an overwhelming number of people said they wished they had taken advantage of their campus health center.
So here is an overview of the most important services your student health center has to offer and why you should definitely check them out.
1. You are already paying for these health services.
Here’s the thing: The cost of college includes tuition, room and board, and miscellaneous tuition. These fees usually include student health services, which means you could already pay to access these resources. So why not make the most of it?
For example, health fees are mandatory for all UNC-Chapel Hill students, whether or not they visit the health center, Ken Pittman, MHA, ANGRY, executive director of campus health services at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, tells SELF. (Although 78% of students use university health services at least once a year, he notes). Basic services such as primary care visits, gynecological exams, emergency care and mental health counseling are covered by this fee, he says, so they will not be charged to the hospital at all. ‘Health Insurance.
As for the services not covered by the student health contribution? These vary from school to school, but may include laboratory tests, such as rapid flu tests, X-rays, and certain procedures (for example, some campus health centers do IUD insertions and others don’t), says Pittman. These services are billed to the student’s personal health insurance, which may be required at some institutions.
Remember that you can stay on your parent’s health insurance plan until you turn 26, for Healthcare.gov, so you could have coverage that way. Many colleges and universities even offer student medical insurance plans, which may be another option for you. To learn more about your school’s specific health care requirements, talk to the people at your campus health center.
2. It’s easy to schedule regular exams.
When you have assignments to write and courses to complete, annual exams can seem tedious. Also, if you are feeling well (except for the occasional sleepless night), do you really need routine checkups?
TBH, yes. Regular checkups are a form of preventative care, which can help you identify or avoid health problems before they become more serious problems that need treatment. This involves services such as routine blood tests, mental health screenings and physical exams, according to the United States National Library of Medicine. Yes, your childcare doctor, if you have one, can perform these services, but thanks to your student health center, you won’t have to wait until you get home to book an appointment. -you.