These days, students choose their college based on a number of factors, and not all of them have to do with academics. The healthcare services schools offer certainly factor into the equation, and many universities and colleges are starting to offer more comprehensive health services in an effort to attract more students. Comprehensive care More students are entering college with conditions that require maintenance, including asthma, diabetes, eating disorders, and physical disabilities. Schools that can boast a robust health services department are a more attractive choice for students who need regular services. Even students who are not managing a condition value the convenience of getting routine primary care or OB/GYN services on campus. For example, last month the University of Connecticut announced it is building an 18,000-square-foot, $4.36 million medical center on its main campus that will offer urgent care, orthopedics, cardiology, dermatology, occupational medicine, family medicine, psychiatry, and OB/GYN services. The new facility will be much more convenient for students who currently have to travel 35 miles to receive services in the school’s health center and hospital. Mental health College health services departments are also beginning to offer more mental health services in response to a greater demand. According to the American College Health Association, key stumbling blocks to student success include stress, sleep difficulty, concern for a friend or family member, anxiety/depression, and alcohol abuse, which are issues that can be addressed with mental health programming. In the United Kingdom, the number of university students seeking counseling has grown over a third in the last four years. Stateside, the Jed Foundation, a leading nonprofit working to protect the emotional health of teenagers and colleges students, recognized 30 institutions of higher learning for their mental health services and suicide prevention programs just last month. Prevention and education Colleges are also beefing up their education and awareness campaigns to try and prevent health concerns before they start or remove the stigma associated with getting help. Some even offer mobile applications. The University of Oregon created a free mobile app that is designed to answer sex questions students may not be comfortable asking, while also providing information about sexually transmitted infections and safe sex. Locum tenens provide a flexible solution As colleges and universities expand their healthcare offerings it is important to having adequate physicians and nurse practitioner staffing to provide care to all students and keep appointment wait times short. Locum tenens staffing is a flexible solution that healthcare organizations and hospitals use to efficiently manage staffing levels and mixes in light of changing demand. Staff leaders often use locum tenens providers to clear backlogs when overscheduling occurs. This eliminates the need to ask existing providers to take on extra shifts, which can lead to staff burnout. Facilities that can’t justify adding a new employee can use locums to adequately manage their population’s needs. Colleges and universities planning to open a brand new service line can also benefit from locum tenens staffing. Staff managers can use a mix of permanent employees and locum tenens providers to get the service line off the ground, instead of waiting to fill the entire department with permanent employees. To learn more about the advantages of using locum tenens, visit our Barton Advantage Page.