For Parents


COVID-19 is making college decisions and transitions more challenging. Learn about U-M's prevention efforts and response at U-M Health Response.

Top Ten Things U-M Students Need to Know about Getting Health Care at UHS

For parents of CURRENT students:

You can find out why UHS is one of your student's best campus resources at:

For parents of NEW students:

The university supports students' well-being in many ways.

To help students transition to becoming a U-M, they receive an email with information about health and wellness, typically before classes begin. Undergraduates also receive information about using health care services and other important topics through orientation.

You may wish to read the appropriate webpage for your new student:

For New Students (non-international)


For New International Students

Parents are a primary source of health information and support for students, so this page offers suggestions for how you can help your student make a healthy transition to college.

Parent & Family Orientation Resources

  • UHS: Your Student’s Campus Health & Wellness Resource slides (2023)

Submit this information as soon as you can, preferably at least 30 days before classes begin:

Health care at the university:

University Health Service (UHS) is a clinic and wellness resource, and U-M students can get the majority of their health care at UHS.

Most currently enrolled U-M students (Ann Arbor campus) pay a mandatory health service fee, included as part of tuition, that funds clinical services at UHS and well-being services to improve campus health and wellness. 

UHS provides services for non-urgent and urgent health care concerns, plus some specialty services. Language interpretation is available. 

To learn more about health care on campus, see How to Get Health Care.

Health examination, immunizations, and health history:

You or your student may arrange for a physical exam with their home healthcare provider (this is recommended but not required). At that visit, your student can update immunizations. 

You may arrange for a physical exam with your home health care provider (recommended but not required). At that visit, you can update immunizations. 

We encourage you to be fully immunized. Immunizations are recommended to protect your health and the health of others.

See recommendations on our Immunizations page and in particular note that:

  • If possible, get a flu shot before coming to campus 
  • Meningitis is a serious and potentially fatal illness that immunization can help prevent

If your student is unsure of their immunization status, they may check with their healthcare provider before coming to campus. They can also get immunizations at UHS for a fee, which may be covered by their health insurance.

Make sure your student knows their health history, including current medications and any allergies to medications, foods, etc.

If your student has a complex health history:

  • You may wish to facilitate obtaining a summary letter from your student's physician
  • Encourage your student to schedule an introductory appointment with a UHS physician early in their first academic term and deliver the letter at the visit (don't send it in advance)
  • See also Resources for Students with Chronic Health Conditions


If your student takes prescription medication:

  • Please arrange for prescription renewals and/or a supply of medications to bring to school. Keep all medications in original containers. 
  • If you have a prescription from your home pharmacy, you may be able to transfer it to a local pharmacy in Ann Arbor, such as the UHS Pharmacy.
  • UHS may be an option for renewing prescriptions. See How to Get Prescription Medications. If your student takes medications for Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, learn about prescriptions at ADHD

If your student wears glasses or contact lenses, send a current prescription with them in case a replacement is needed. Eye exams, contact lenses and glasses are available for a fee at the UHS Eye Care Clinic and Optical Shop.

If your student receives allergy shots and wants to continue shots at UHS, you can arrange for a supply of antigen from their home allergist for delivery. UHS reviews and approves all treatment programs. For more information, call 734-764-8320 or see Allergy Shots.

Health insurance:

Your student should have health insurance to cover:

  • Services received at UHS that are not covered by the health service fee (e.g. medication, testing, immunizations)
  • Services received outside UHS (e.g. emergency room visits, hospitalization)

If your student will use your health insurance, contact your health insurance company and:

  • Inform them that your student will be away at college.
  • Inquire about coverage in the Ann Arbor area, ask whether your plan has network providers here, ask how your student can use your insurance at university. 
  • Consider requesting an "out-of-area waiver" for your student's time at university.

Talk with your student about using insurance:

  • Provide copies of your medical and prescription drug cards (with policy numbers and billing addresses) and encourage your student to carry them. Your student may prefer to take photos of cards, and/or access information about their insurance online. 
  • Discuss how to use health insurance 

If needed, arrange for health insurance. Consider purchasing the U-M Domestic Student Health Insurance Plan, a low-cost voluntary plan for U-M students offered through the university. (International students who are required to have health insurance will get it when they arrive through the U-M International Center Health Insurance Office.)

Help your student practice decision-making skills:

Talk with your student about decisions they are likely to encounter in college such as alcohol and other drug use, getting enough sleep, managing time, handling stress, exercising, eating, sexual behavior, hygiene (e.g., hand washing, covering coughs), and being financially responsible. Research shows that Parents Can Influence Kids' Drinking in College.

You can:

  • Help your student practice making important choices before leaving for college
  • Tell your student what you expect
  • Offer non-judgmental listening and let your student know you're available

You may wish to provide a Health Care Kit for your student and help them understand when/how to practice self-care and when to get medical advice. I'm Sick. What Should I do? Suggestions for Colds/Flu provides guidance for students.

Campus resources

U-M offers a wide variety of well-being resources. If you would like help learning about U-M well-being resources for your student, you may contact Wolverine Wellness at University Health Service, 734-763-1320 or [email protected].

If your student is currently receiving mental health care, or is interested in doing so, please:

The Collegiate Recovery Program (CRP) provides a supportive community where students in recovery can achieve academic success while enjoying a genuine college experience, free from alcohol and other drugs. If your student is in recovery or is curious about recovery, please contact the CRP.

Students with disabilities needing academic accommodations or services should contact the Services for Students with Disabilities Office (phone 734-763-3000). Students wishing to receive services must register with this office. Disabilities include chronic health or mental health conditions, learning disorders as well as visual, hearing and mobility impairments.

U-M is a tobacco-free campus that offers support for quitting tobacco. Learn more at Tobacco-Free University Initiative.

Contact us:

See also: