As a parent of a college student you play a key role in your student’s health and wellness. Even though your child may be miles away from home, you will still be a primary source of health information for them. We hope the following information will assist you in helping your student make a healthy transition to college life.
Immunizations, health history and physical examinations
- Make sure your student has updated immunizations appropriate for their age group. Boosters for meningitis, and tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis might be needed. Submit immunization records to us by following the guidelines on the Requirements and Forms page.
- While a pre-college physical exam is not required by the University of Iowa, many parents and students choose to have this done before starting college. It is a good time to update any needed immunizations and for your student to discuss any health concerns or questions with their health provider. Athletics and health science colleges have their own requirements for physical exams and/or health statements.
- Make sure your student knows his or her health history. If your student has a chronic or recurrent health problem, send a summary letter from your local physician with your student. Ask your student to schedule a get-acquainted visit with a Student Health provider at which time, that summary letter can be turned in and discussed.
- Make sure your student knows their current medications and allergies.
- If your student is under age 18 when they arrive on campus, Iowa law requires that we have your consent to provide medical care and treatment for most conditions. Please complete the Minor Consent Form under the "Minor Students" section of the Requirements and Forms page. and either scan and email it or mail it to our clinic. You will need to sign and send all three forms in the Minor Students section if your student is under age 18, to authorize billing to insurance, and to acknowledge our privacy notice.
- If your student needs a medical or religious exemption for the UI immunization requirements, please visit the Requirements and Forms page for downloadable forms from the Iowa Department of Public Health. Please note instructions for religious exemption if the student is 18 years or older at the time of admission.
- All incoming students at The University of Iowa are required to have health insurance.
- Provide your student with an insurance card which includes policy numbers, billing address and pharmacy information and encourage your student to carry the card at all times. (A photocopy of the front and back of your card is sufficient.) We will ask for this card when your student has an appointment in our clinic; it is not necessary to send in advance.
- Inform your health insurance company that your child will be away at college and find out if there are network providers here at UI Student Health and what the level of coverage is (and tell your student what you find out.)
- The University of Iowa offers an excellent Student Health Insurance Program (SHIP) option
- Spend time talking with your student about decisions they are likely to be faced with at college such as alcohol and other drug use, managing time, getting adequate sleep, stress management, nutrition, fitness, sexual behavior, and financial responsibility.
- Let them know what your expectations are and that you will be available to listen.
- As your student's healthcare provider, we are legally required to protect the privacy of their health information. If your student is 18 years of age or older, we cannot provide you with any of their health information, including billing information, unless they sign a Release of Information form found on our Requirements and Forms page.
Self-care: Suggested health supplies to send to college with your student:
- A thermometer
- Pain relievers (like Tylenol and Ibuprofen)
- Cold/sinus medicine (like Sudafed)
- Cough syrup (like Robitussin or Mucinex)
- Hand sanitizer
- Allergy medicine (like Allegra, Zyrtec, or Claritin)
- First aid kit including Band-Aids, antibiotic ointment for cuts/scrapes, hydrocortisone cream for rashes and itching, ice pack
Care for ongoing conditions
- Have a plan in place regarding how your student will manage any chronic conditions they may have.
- If your child has ADHD, click here for frequently asked questions.
We are here to help your student succeed by providing quality healthcare, education and health promotion. Please take a few minutes to watch the following video to find out why we are your student's campus healthcare experts.