It is our hope that the Student Health Center and Pharmacy (SHCP) Frequently Asked Question section will help you better navigate your health and well being. We are here to help you get well and stay well.

Visit our About SHCP for an overview of the services we offer.

Appointment Information

Call the appointment phone number at 205-348-2778, or use the Patient Portal through MyBama. Walk-ins are always welcome. Services that require an appointment include Women’s Health, Dermatology, Psychiatry, Nutrition, and Allergy.
You need to download and print the UA required form, have it completed by your health care provider and then upload the completed form per the directions on the immunization page. Immunizations are offered Monday through Friday on a walk-in basis and you must sign in before 4 p.m. Visit the clinic services section of our website for information on foreign travel immunizations.

Billing and Insurance

The SHCP currently accepts hundreds of insurance plans so it is unlikely that SHCP could not take your insurance plan. If you are concerned about you particular plan, please contact the SHCP billing office at (205) 348-1701.

Yes, as an enrolled student you can still be seen without your insurance card but we must receive it within 48 hours. If the insurance card is not received within 48 hours, all charges will be billed to the student account. You can upload the front and back of your insurance card to myBama.

Some students have saved front and back photos of their insurance cards on their cell phones.
Note: Insurance coverage can change at any time, such as when parent/guardian changes jobs, their employer changes carriers, etc. Students should present their health insurance card to the SHCP receptionist to verify continued coverage.

Medicaid is a state-specific form of health insurance. For that reason, it can only be used in your home state where it was issued. Unfortunately, neither the SHCP nor other health care providers can bill on out-of-state Medicaid. The SHCP strongly encourages all students to have health care insurance to cover the cost of essential health services. Staying healthy is one of the keys to academic success

What are my options if I have Medicaid from another state?

  • Option one – ComCare: With documentation of active Medicaid from another state, SHCP can offer ComCare for routine office visits at a reduced cost. Lab, X-rays, and medications are not covered by ComCare and represent additional costs when needed for assessment and care. ComCare is only usable at SHCP. All charges are convenienly posted to your UA student account. Demonstrating no active insurance requires us to have:
    • A copy of your parent’s tax return if you are under 25 or a copy of your personal tax return if you are 26 or older reflecting no insurance.
    • Verification of active Medicaid insurance from another state.
    • For questions about ComCare, please call 205-348-7164.
  • Option 2 – United Health Care Student Resources Insurance: Investigate with your parent/guardian the option of the University sponsored insurance through United Health Care Student Resources, which offers a strong plan at a low cost. Information is available at university sponsored health insurance. There are specific deadlines for enrollment and help can be provided if you need assistance by calling (205) 348-4086

Yes, you can still be seen. Students are not required to be covered by insurance to be seen at the SCHP. However, the SCHP recommends that all students be covered by a health insurance plan while attending UA to help cover the costs of their health care.

Billing for services: As with any health care entity, you will be charged for a visit. There are two options for students who do not have insurance coverage personally or under their parent’s insurance policy. It is also important to note that out of state students who have Medicaid insurance in their home state can only use that insurance coverage in the state where it is issued.

Yes. The University sponsored plan is with United Health Care Student Resources (UHCSR) and offers a strong plan at low cost. For more information and guidance in applying, refer to the website, university sponsored health insurance. For additional assistance call 205-348-4086.

The annual premium will continue until it concludes on July 31. If you graduate earlier than that, you will need to seek health care at University Medical Center or at a medical practice in the community.

If you purchased insurance on a semester basis and the coverage ends in May when you graduate and you wish to extend the coverage, you will need to purchase a continuation policy beyond May through United Health Care Student Resources by contacting the organization directly.

Yes, you can purchase coverage for your spouse and your children through United Health Care Student Resources. However, the SHCP can only serve enrolled students, so non-UA students would need to seek care at a medical practice in the community.
Yes, we will file your insurance. You can use a Flex card to pay your co-pay, or the co-pay can be sent to your Student Account. We participate in Aetna, Blue Cross of Alabama, Cigna, Humana, Alabama Medicaid, Tricare, UHC, and Viva health insurance plans. Always, check your insurance to make sure SHCP includes either in-network or out-of-network benefits under your insurance. Medicaid insurance is state specific, so only Alabama Medicaid can be used in the state of Alabama.
A copay is a set amount you pay at the time of medical service wherever you go for care. Each insurance plan copay is different, so you will need to verify your copay with your insurance plan, as well as deductibles, and out-of-pocket expense you may have after insurance processes your claim.
Each insurance plan is different. Some insurers require you to meet a set deductible before they pay anything on your claims. Be sure to check with your insurance provider and ask about your deductible.
Charges sent to your student account from the SHCP after insurance is paid are listed as “Student Health Center and Pharmacy” without identifying the specific medical service you received. Pharmacy charges are listed separately as “Pharmacy Charges” with no further information. This is for your privacy and confidentiality.


No, we do not. If you need the name of a dentist we can provide you with a referral.

Health and Wellness

Prevention measures are key. Reducing the frequency of illnesses essentially revolves around the observance of appropriate hygiene practices.

  • Change toothbrushes often, especially after an occurrence of illness.
  • Use disinfectant wipes to clean surfaces of toilet handles, doorknobs, light switches, television remotes, game controllers, and any other communally shared items.
  • Do not eat or drink after others.
  • Keep pump hand sanitizers in your room. Carry hand sanitizers in your backpack and store some in your car for use before eating. Use hand sanitizers after touching door surfaces when entering or exiting rooms and buildings.
  • Plan for adequate rest and sleep, which is a common oversight by college students and yet important for both prevention of and recovery from an illness.
Many students experience new or increased allergy symptoms after moving to Tuscaloosa. Students from other regions of the country may not be aware of allergies to grasses or pollens in the South until after they arrive. If you are experiencing persistent congestion, sneezing, itchy watery eyes, or other symptoms suggestive of allergies, consider trying and consistently using over-the-counter medications like Claritin or Zyrtec, along with an allergy nasal spray like Flonase, for 10 to 14 days to see if this will control or resolve the symptoms. Additionally, an air purifier in your dorm room may be very beneficial. If you need further evaluation, visit the SHCP for more guidance. Should your situation require it, our providers can refer you to a local allergist and prescription medications can be filled at the SHCP.


We are fortunate to have DCH Regional Medical Center within two blocks of the SCHP. DCH Regional Medical Center is a full-service referral hospital with the region’s most advanced trauma center and intensive care units. SHCP staff works closely with DCH administration, the physicians who practice there and its Emergency Department. For more information visit the DCH website

Privacy, confidentiality of records and their release are governed by two distinctly different federal laws for the Student Health Center and for the hospital. See Privacy and Confidentiality for more details.

Hours, Location, Bus Routes and Parking

We are conveniently located at 750 Peter Bryce Boulevard.
The Hub Route 1, Hub Route 2, and Perimeter bus routes will take you to our location.

The parking lot in front of both the SHCP and University Medical Center is for patient parking only. If you get a parking ticket and you were seen as a patient at either SHCP or UMC, you can get the ticket dropped, which requires verification of a clinic visit from an official at either site. Bring the clinic visit verification and a copy of your ticket to the SHCP and we can call UA Parking Services to have it voided.

Please visit our hours page to view our hours of operation.

When the University is closed, the SHCP is also closed, but students can go to University Medical Center, which is located at the opposite end of the SHCP building, for care.

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, proceed to the nearest hospital, DCH Regional Medical Center, or call 911.

Lab and X-Ray Services

University Medical Center (UMC) has an in-house lab that the SHCP uses and that is conveniently located in our building. Sometimes labs have to be sent out to LabCorp or Quest. You need to verify with your insurer about which lab they cover and let the SHCP front desk know at the time of service; this ensures your lab work will get sent to the correct lab and help avoid additional out of pocket expenses.

Mental Health and Psychiatry

Our providers are skilled at assessment and treatment of routine mental health conditions. We can also recommend other campus-based resources that may be appropriate, such as the Counseling Center, the Women and Gender Resource Center, the Student Care and Wellbeing Office, the Psychology Clinic, the Family Therapy Clinic, and Collegiate Recovery and Intervention Services.

When more specialized help is needed, psychiatry services are available at the SHCP. Our psychiatrists can provide evaluations, ongoing support, and assist with medications. You can make an appointment by calling 205-348-8262. Visit the Psychiatry section of our website for more information.

Most insurers do, but you will need to contact your insurance company (see the number listed on back of your card) and ask about mental health benefits, including about deductibles and any other out-of-pocket costs, and if a referral or pre-authorization is required. Most insurance policies require a pre-certification before the visit, which the SHCP can help with.

New Patient Expectations

Please enter check-in line upon arrival and wait for the first available receptionist to call you forward. The receptionist will take your demographics and insurance information and will have electronic forms on an iPad for you to complete. In the exam room, the nurse will ask about your medical and family history but no additional forms need to be completed.
You will need to bring your Action Card, health insurance/flex card, and any other separate cards for prescription benefits. All charges not paid by your insurer/flex account will be sent to your student account.

Our staff is committed to providing high-quality health care to students at UA. We realize this may be your first time seeking care away from home and want to make your experience as comfortable as possible.

Your first visit will include a review of your medical history and family history. Vital signs will be taken by nurses in advance of your visit with the provider.

The provider will evaluate your current needs and plan for follow-up care will be explained to you. Please listen carefully and follow the advice for best outcomes. Always return if your illness changes or does not improve.

If medications are prescribed, our pharmacy can meet most of your needs. In limited circumstances, your health insurance plan may require use of a specific commercial pharmacy and we will e-prescribe that prescription to that source.

Most common over-the-counter medications can be obtained at our onsite pharmacy.

The SHCP will provide a class excuse when requested. The excuse will cover only the day of the visit and will state when the student can safely return to class. Please note that UA are not required to accept a class excuse from SHCP. For illnesses or injuries that result in prolonged absences, the UA Office of the Dean of Students can assist with notifications to faculty about extended medically related absences. If an extended absence is deemed necessary by your SHCP provider, with your permission, we can notify the Office of the Dean of Students for you.

As with any health care practice, there are peak times of the day when the volume is higher than others and therefore the potential wait is longer. Coming early, between 8am-10am, is a good idea as this is a less busy time.

As the patient, you are in control of what information is shared, with whom and under what circumstances. You must sign a Release of Information form with our Medical Records department to allow us to talk your parents/guardian or other health care providers. We keep this form on file in your medical record. You can change this information any time, limit the release to a certain date(s), and restrict what cannot be shared.

We encourage our students to take personal responsibility for their own health and learn to navigate the health care environment independently. Our intent is to facilitate that process in a collaborative way with our students. Learn more about privacy and confidentiality.

Sometimes it is in the patient’s best interest to use an over-the-counter medication to ease symptoms while the body fights the infection or illness. A prescription might not be indicated and might not be consistent with current evidenced-based medical care. When over-the-counter medications are the most appropriate option, we educate students about why that a prescription is not indicated and provide follow up recommendations should a change in symptoms.

When an illness does not improve or symptoms worsen students are advised to return to the SHCP.


No, we do not. If you need the name of an optometrist, we can provide you with a referral.

Questions, Comments, and Concerns

Your comments are important to us as your health and well being is our mission. There are three ways to communicate with us:

  • Complete the patient satisfaction survey that is sent to your Crimson email after each visit. Including your contact information allows us to communicate with you confidentially.
  • Call the quality improvement coordinator at (205)-348-3877.
  • Communicate directly with your provider through the Patient Portal.

Patient Portal

You can access the SHCP Patient Portal through the “Portal” tab on our website or through MyBama. Through the portal, you can schedule appointments, request to refill prescriptions, send and receive secure messages with a provider, and upload health insurance documents.

Patient Qualifications

You must be enrolled in at least 1 credit hour to be eligible for services.
No, we do not. We focused entirely on serving UA enrolled students.
Per UA policy, you must be enrolled as a student to be eligible for care at the SHCP. Our Medical Records Department can send your records to another provider after graduation at your request.

Pharmacy at SHCP

You must present your Action Card and CWID. For controlled medications, you must have your social security number or driver’s license.
The pharmacy will attempt to file your insurance at time the prescription is filled. Co-pays can be paid at the time of pick up via credit card or can be billed to your student account.
No. The pharmacy cannot accept any medications filled by another pharmacy.
To transfer a prescription to the SHCP, provide the name of your medication, the name of your pharmacy, and your pharmacy’s phone number. Our pharmacy staff will be glad to call your home pharmacy and have your prescription transferred.
Yes, our pharmacy carries many prescriptions and over-the-counter used to treat allergies. If you require serum for your allergies, they can be sent by your allergist to our Allergy Clinic, where they will be stored for you and injections provided on your set schedule.
We carry most of the common ADHD/ADD medications. Visit the ADHD/ADD on our website for more information.

Your prescription label will tell you if there are refills available, so check that information first. If not, you will need to have the prescription renewed with the provider. If you need to refill a prescription from your home pharmacy, you can call the SHCP and provide the name of your medication, pharmacy, and your pharmacy’s phone number and our pharmacy staff will call your home pharmacy to transfer your prescription.

There are three ways you can obtain a refill:

  • Use the SHCP Pharmacy App. If you don’t have the app, you can download it by searching “University of Alabama Pharmacy” on the App Store.
  • Make an online request through the UA Pharmacy Online Refill page on the SHCP website.
  • Request by phone at 205-348-6276.
Yes, our computer system can store your prescription until you are ready to have it filled.
Yes, just have the pharmacy call us and we will transfer it to them.
Yes, any licensed provider can call, fax, or e-scribe a new prescription to our pharmacy. The fax number is 205-348-9850
Our pharmacy does not do Auto-fill refills. When you are ready for your refill, please contact us using the UA Pharmacy app, refill website page, or call us at (205-348-6276).
We can send text or email notifications if your cell phone number or email is on file with the SHCP. If you expect a prescription to be ready and have not received notification, please call us to check on it.
Yes, you can download our UA Pharmacy app by searching “University of Alabama Pharmacy” on the App Store.
Yes, we carry a supply of commonly used over-the-counter products and can special order items that are not stocked.
No, our pharmacy is not equipped to accept prescription coupons or discount cards.
The SHCP accepts most major insurance plans, but many insurers require use of specific pharmacy. Please call your prescription insurance company (phone number is often located on the back of your health insurance card) to confirm that they will pay for prescriptions filled at our pharmacy.
Yes, you can call the SHCP pharmacy at 205-348-6276 to let us know the name of the person who will pick up your prescription. That person must present their photo ID at time of pick up.
Patient printouts may be picked up by the patient at the pharmacy with a photo ID. If the student is unable to come in person, reports may be requested through the Medical Records Department by calling 205-348-4678. For your protection, the pharmacy will not release information over the phone or via email.

Privacy and Confidentiality

There are two different federal laws that regulate privacy and confidentiality of health/medical records and the release of these records.

The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

FERPA refers only to student health centers, like the SHCP, that only provide care to university students.

The SHCP is under the protections of FERPA, which is a federal law that governs educational systems. We must honor the wishes of our student patients when it involves the disclosure of their PHI to anyone, including their parents. Students are required to sign an ROI (Release of Information) form which directs us for any verbal, electronic, or written release of any information regarding their care. The student may rescind any current ROI signed at any time. The student may also allow some information to be released and other information to be restricted. Except in an extraordinary situation, the SHCP may not violate that ROI. Even though parents/guardians are generally paying for their student’s education and their health insurance is under their parent/guardian’s policy, we are required by this law to honor the student’s wishes with regards to disclosing PHI. There are severe penalties to an institution for violations of this federal regulation.

The Health Insurance and Portability Accountability Act (HIPAA)

HIPAA refers to health care entities that are not restricted in those for whom they provide medical care and treatment, such as hospitals, rehab centers, physician practices, nursing homes, etc.

Hospitals and other health care entities that are not restricted to university students only are governed by HIPAA, which is the federal legislation that provides data privacy and security provisions for safeguarding medical information and Protected Health Information (PHI). For this reason, hospitals must also comply with the wishes for privacy of information and release or restriction of information sharing to anyone, including parents. There are also severe penalties for hospitals and other health care entities for violations of this regulation. Exceptions are few and would represent extraordinary situations.

Services of the SHC and Pharmacy

Please visit about SHCP for a detailed overview of our services.
Our providers include board-certified physicians and physician specialists, certified nurse practitioners, and a registered dietitian.
The SHCP Insurance Office can help (205-348-1701) or you can call Alabama Medicaid (800-688-7989)which will refer you to a specialist that participates with your insurance plan.

Yes. For unique and specialized needs beyond our scope, the SHCP has a strong relationship with specialists in the community and can expedite a referral to them when needed. Dedicated referral nurses at the SHCP facilitate scheduling with the specialist’s office. We annually refer students for services in dermatology, gastroenterology, pulmonology, cardiology, ENT, dentistry, and others.

SHCP providers are available to evaluate and treat many injuries and common painful conditions related to muscles, bones, and joints. If the problem is beyond our scope, we will arrange a referral to our Sports Medicine Center at University Medical Center or to a local orthopedist.

Our providers are able to diagnose and treat common dermatological problems. For severe problems, our staff can assist with a referral to a qualified dermatologist in the area.

Sexual Health

Free condoms and safer sex products are available at a variety of locations on campus. Check out Health Promotion and Wellness’ website for locations.

At the SHCP, our providers will order tests specifically related to your symptoms, and the specimen will be collected at the lab in our building.

Depending on the tests requested and performed, your insurance may or may not cover the billed charges for the testing. Unfortunately, we cannot determine whether a test will be covered prior to performing the test. If your insurance does not cover the test, you will either be billed directly by the lab or by the SHCP. If you wish to see the a SHCP provider for these services, you are acknowledging you understand that you could be responsible for the entire bill, which includes office visit charge and lab charges.

If you are unsure that your insurance will cover testing, or you do not wish to pay out of pocket for testing, you can go to the Alabama Department of Public Health which provides free STI screening.

The Alabama Department of Public Health for Tuscaloosa County is located at 2350 Hargrove Road East, Tuscaloosa, AL 35405, and can be reached at 205-562-6900.

Another community option for STI and HIV testing available in Tuscaloosa is Five Horizons Health Services. Through federal and other sources of funding, Five Horizons Health Services, provides some reduced and free options for testing. Five Horizons is located at 2720 6th Street and the phone number is 205-759-8470. Our providers can refer you if you are concerned about the high cost of certain testing for STIs.

Women’s Health

The SHCP Women’s Health Clinic provides routine pelvic exams, pap smears, contraception counseling, treatment of sexually transmitted diseases, as well as pregnancy testing and counseling. Students can schedule an appointment by calling (205)-348-2778 or by accessing the SHCP Patient Portal on the MyBama student page.
Every insurance plan is different, and the employer of the insured selects the policy they want their employees to have and can set standards, such as pre-certification. Some gynecology procedures, like contraceptive implants, require a pre-certification to ensure that the procedure is medically necessary, and to prevent a costly out-of-pocket charge to you if a pre-certification was not done.
Because we are a walk-in clinic, you can see any of our providers for an unexpected situation, including female issues.