Letter from Director Guy Nicolette, MD
Dear Parents and Family Members:
I would like to say hello to you and welcome your student to the University of Florida. The purpose of this letter is to give you a brief overview of the medical care available at the Student Health Care Center (SHCC). Our mission is to help your child remain healthy while at UF. Should your student contact you with any medical concerns, please remember that we are here to help. We are accredited by the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC) and strive to provide state-of-the-art medical care to all eligible patients.
Advanced access and personalized care
The SHCC offers medical care in an efficient and timely manner. Our “Advanced Access” appointment system offers same-day or next-day appointments to students, resulting in substantially decreased wait times and increased patient satisfaction. With this system, all UF students are assigned a primary care provider, which ensures continuity of care and enhances the quality of that care.
With the exception of emergencies or urgent concerns, we ask that students “call first” rather than walk in so we can best serve them with the most convenient appointments to meet their needs. New students can schedule appointments beginning the first day of classes by calling (352) 392-1161 and pressing 3. To meet student needs, the SHCC began piloting online scheduling for current students on July 1, 2013.
We take medical confidentiality seriously at the SHCC and, as such, are prevented by law from releasing any medical information to parents of non-minor children without the student’s consent; however, please know that in the case of a life or death emergency, a student’s listed UF emergency contacts are notified immediately.
All staff is HIPAA compliant and trained annually on federal laws that govern medical records security and patient confidentiality issues. Be assured that all medical records are secure and confidential and cannot be released to others without a student’s express permission. Visit UF Privacy for more information about privacy at the University of Florida. You may also wish to review the Emergency Room Policy.
Meningococcal meningitis and Hepatitis B vaccinations
You may be aware that college students, particularly those living in residence halls, are at an increased risk from contracting Meningococcal meningitis. The Florida legislature has mandated that all students admitted to institutions of higher education be informed about Meningococcal meningitis and Hepatitis B. UF requires all entering students to either obtain vaccinations for these two diseases or to sign a waiver declining the vaccines. Immunizations can be purchased at the SHCC, from a family physician or at a local health department. Please visit our Immunizations section for detailed information, or call our Special Clinics area at (352) 294-7472.
Flu shots in the fall
For most young adults, getting the flu is more of an inconvenience than a medical threat (although for some people, medical complications can result from the flu). Because flu season typically begins when academic demands on students are the greatest, we provide influenza vaccinations to registered students to reduce the likelihood that they will fall behind academically. Please consider encouraging your child to take advantage of this service when the yearly flu vaccine becomes available.
During fall and spring semesters, the SHCC is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and accepts urgent care walk-ins on Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. During the summer semester, the SHCC is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Please note that schedules may change according to UF holidays, break weeks and special events.
The SHCC also offers an urgent care walk-in clinic for acute injuries and significant illnesses during regular hours. If your student has an urgent, non-emergency concern beyond regular hours, medical (352-392-1161) and mental health (352-392-1575) professionals are available for over-the-phone consultation 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
I hope this letter has been informative and that your student takes advantage of our comprehensive health care services. If your child currently has a special medical condition, please encourage him or her make an appointment before problems arise. If you are ever in Gainesville, consider touring our facility. Finally, please do not hesitate to contact me at (352) 294-7439 if I can help you or your child in any way.
Guy W. Nicolette, MD, CAQSM
Student Health Care Center
University of Florida