Student Health Services
The mission of the Student Health Center (SHC) includes the treatment of illnesses and injuries, and the promotion of health and wellness in an environment that reflects the love and compassion of Christ.
The Student Health Center staff desires to help students in any way possible in order to support them during their time here at Houghton. We hope that students who have health concerns will feel free to come by and speak with us. It is a privilege to serve students in this place and we always appreciate suggestions as to how we can do it better.
The SHC is conveniently located in the lower level of Gillette Residence Hall and can be accessed from the parking lot next to the Campus Center. It is staffed by registered nurses and an on-site physician and is open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Services available at the Health Center include unlimited access to our nursing staff while the SHC is open for the assessment and treatment of minor illnesses and injuries. Allergy injections, administration of immunizations, phlebotomy, and daily medication delivery from the local pharmacy are also part of the services offered at the Health Center. Appointments can be made with the college physician as needed following a nursing evaluation. Same day appointments can usually be accommodated. All onsite nursing and physician services (with the exception of admission physicals) are covered through an annual health fee. Charges for medications, laboratory testing, radiology and other ancillary or off-site services are billed to the student’s insurance company by the providing facilities, and fees for those services, therefore, may apply, according to the terms outlined in an individual’s insurance plan. Referrals are made to local physicians, area specialists, or ER/ hospitals as needed.
When the SHC is closed, students with emergent health needs should contact 911. If the issue is not life threatening, questions should be directed to Residence Life Staff (RA, RD) who have a list of contacts that can be used if needed to assist in decision making.
Houghton College requires that all students taking at least 12 hours of credit provide proof of health insurance coverage. The college makes a reasonably priced, limited benefit Accident and Illness Policy available to students who do not have insurance coverage otherwise. The college operates under an “opt out” policy, meaning that students will be automatically enrolled in the college negotiated plan (and the charge for such will be applied to their student account) unless they submit a waiver providing information regarding alternate insurance coverage. Because a person’s insurance coverage may change periodically, a waiver must be submitted each year before matriculation can occur. The college accident insurance is mandatory for all intercollegiate athletes and is an option for all other students. The Health Center staff is available to answer questions and to assist in the filing of claims if needed.
If a student has a medical condition (physical or psychological) that interferes with that student’s ability to perform academically, or if that student’s behavior/condition is such that other students are being hindered in their academic/living environment, a medical leave from the college may be granted. Such leave is granted by the dean of students. This is not a disciplinary action, and students given medical leave are encouraged to return to the college to continue their studies as soon as they are able to do so. An evaluation may be required to ascertain whether the behaviors/conditions that warranted the granting of the leave have been sufficiently addressed.
In keeping with New York State's stringent Public Health Law, all students are required to provide documented proof of immunization (2 doses of vaccine) or immunity (by blood work) to measles, mumps and rubella. In addition, state law requires that a waiver form be completed in regard to the meningococcal vaccine indicating a specific choice to either receive or decline the immunization. The Health Center strongly recommends that students living in the dormitories receive this vaccine. An up-to-date tetanus/diphtheria immunization is also required. TB testing is recommended but is up to the discretion of the student’s physician based on risk profile. Hepatitis B immunization is recommended. In addition to the immunization records, an admission physical/health form is required to be submitted prior to the beginning of classes. Failure to meet these requirements may result in being restricted from attending classes.