College Health Centers: Valuable Services to Meet the Needs of a Student Population

Student Affairs, Student Health, Value-Added Benefits

College Health Centers want to offer comprehensive services regardless of size and budget.

There are certain services that all health centers should consider implementing to meet the needs of a student population and others (that may not be a necessity, but) can still bring value to students if you have a large enough student population and budget.

Here is a list of basic services for college health centers:

  • Primary care medical services
  • Required immunizations as outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
  • A campus-wide annual flu vaccine program
  • A campus-wide disaster response plan that is shared with students
  • Select prescription medications, either prepackaged by a pharmacy vendor or managed by a campus pharmacy.
  • Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) waived tests onsite
  • Contract with an off-site laboratory for more extensive testing
  • Sexually transmitted disease (STD) screenings
  • Mental health services on campus – we suggest a minimum of 5-10 visits with a licensed therapist each semester
  • A viable, afterhours procedure for students that become sick or injured
  • Access to comprehensive health insurance with a rich network of providers to minimize students’ out-of-pocket expenses in the health center
  • A tested referral network near campus for specialty care
  • Campus partnerships for educating students about available services
  • Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC) accreditation
  • Health education materials and resources
  • Public health response plan
  • Clinical Electronic Health Record that meets the needs of young adults with immunization compliance record keeping. The system should also allow for online appointments, appointment reminders, health reminders, and a method for students to access their records and send secure messages to their providers.

It’s important to remember that each campus is different. The services you offer will ultimately be based on your goals to meet the needs of your student population.