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Skidmore College
Health Services

Frequently Asked Questions

Q.  Does Health Services provide medical excuses?

Q.  Does Health Services fill prescriptions?

Q.  What do I do if I’m sick after Health Services has closed?

Q.  Do antibiotics interfere with my birth control?

Q.  Does Health Services sell emergency contraception?

Q.  Are condoms available from Health Services?

Q.  Do I need to have a physical every year?

Q.  What do I do if I have food allergies?

Q.  How long does Health Services keep a student's record after they have graduated?

Q.  How does confidentiality work?

Q.  Do parents have access to health information?

Q.  Does Health Services administer allergy shots?

Q. Does Health Services provide medical excuses?
A. Skidmore College Health Services recognizes that students are expected to attend every class. We advise students to contact their professors directly (preferably before missing a class) to make arrangements to accommodate their illness, if necessary. Health Services cannot vouch for past or present illnesses. As an emerging adult, we believe you, and feel strongly that your professors do as well. Therefore, the Health Services policy is as follows: Verification of medical illness notes are not given to document visits to Health Services.

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Q. Does Health Services fill prescriptions?
A. Health Services does not fill prescriptions written by outside providers. If a student has a prescription that needs to be filled, it may be taken to any of the local pharmacies. Be sure to check your insurance to see if there is a co-pay for medications and bring a copy of your insurance card with you to the pharmacy. Our physicians and nurse practitioners can electronically prescribe medications and prescriptions which can be sent to the pharmacy of your choosing. We do have a fairly well-stocked medication room and dispense both over the counter and prescription medications to ill students for a nominal fee after a student is evaluated. Payment for medications can be by cash, using your Skid ID card (declining balance account) or by charging it to your student account which gets sent home with your tuition bill.                                                                 

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Q. What do I do if I’m sick after Health Services has closed?
A. There is always a provider on call for medical advice after the office has closed. The on-call provider can be accessed by calling Campus Safety at 518-580-5566. The Campus Safety dispatcher will then call the nurse practitioner who will call the student back, it is not necessary to disclose your name or the nature of the call to Campus Safety. Wilton Medical Arts Urgent Care Center is approximately 3 miles from campus and the Saratoga Hospital Emergency Room is approximately 1 mile from campus. Please view the websites for each to help you decide whether to go to the ER or Urgent Care.

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Q. Do antibiotics interfere with my birth control?
A. You're safe to take birth control pills at the same time as antibiotics without also using a back-up method except if taking rifampin, an antibiotic used to treat tuberculosis.

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Q. Does Health Services offer emergency contraception?
A.Yes, emergency contraception is available by appointment at Health Services. A provider can dispense Ella ($40) or Plan-B ($20) or can send a prescription for emergency contraception to a local pharmacy. Emergency contraception is also available at the vending machine on the 2nd floor of Case or may be purchased over-the-counter at most local pharmacies.

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Q. Are condoms available from Health Services?
A. Health Services sells condoms at a cost of 10/$1.00. The Student Wellness Center also sells condoms for the same price and distributes dental dams at no charge. Non-latex condoms are sold there at a cost of 8/$1.00.

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Q. Do I need to have a physical every year?
A. As incoming first years, students are required to have a physical performed by their health care provider within 12 months of arrival on campus. For freshmen participating in intercollegiate sports, there is an additional sports history form that needs to be completed as well. Returning athletes are required to have a sports review that will be done upon return to campus, prior to the beginning of the season. The sports review provides an update on student athletes’ health status as well as a brief exam. There is no physical examination requirement for upperclassmen not participating on an athletic team.

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Q. How long does Health Services keep a student’s records after they have graduated?
A. We are required to keep medical records for a total of 6 years after a student graduates. After that, the records are destroyed and we no longer have access to that information. Students in class years 2016 and later may obtain copies of their immunization record at the online student health portal.

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Q. How does confidentiality work?
A. We take your confidentiality very seriously. We will not disclose any information about you, including the fact that you have come to Health Services, to anyone without your permission. In rare and very specific cases, we may be ethically and/or legally obligated to break confidentiality. Exceptions to confidentiality include: if we judge that you are at imminent risk for seriously hurting yourself or someone else, if you tell us about any current instance of child or elder abuse or if we are court-ordered by a judge to disclose records. If you have more questions about confidentiality, we encourage you to ask your clinician.

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Q.Do parents have access to health information?
A. According to federal privacy laws (HIPPA, FERPA), parents do not have the right to know if or why their son/daughter has visited Health Services. If you are 18 years old or older and have given us written permission to discuss care with your parents, we can talk to them about the issue(s) mentioned in the Release of Information form signed by you. We cannot accept long-term, blanket Release of Information forms. Written permission needs to be given each time a student wants us to discuss care with his/her parents. Federal law requires this level of confidentiality.

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 Q. Does Health Services administer allergy shots?
A. Health Services is not able to administer allergy shots. For a referral to a local provider who can administer allergy shots, please contact us at 518-580-5550.

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 Q. What do I do if I have food allergies?
Dining Services strives to provide culturally diverse, healthy food options to all students. This can be difficult for some students, especially those with food allergies. To help students navigate safely, Dining Services representatives are available to meet with students and parents to review menus, recipes, labels and alternate food choices for those with challenging diets.

Please feel free to reach out at any time:

Dining Services Food Allergy Guidelines

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