Student Access to Programs Supporting Behavioral & Physical Health
Effective January 1, 2023
Purpose: The purpose of this procedural guideline and policy is to outline access to and options available for students at the University of Pennsylvania who may be in need of behavioral health support and treatment, and/or physical health support and treatment.
Scope: All currently enrolled UME students, including those in a different phase of a combined degree program.
Procedural Guidelines for Voluntary, By-Referral, and Administratively Recommended Access
Students who self-identify as needing behavioral or physical health treatment may voluntarily seek it through Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), personal providers, or seek guidance through Student Health Services or Student Intervention Services. These are confidential services, protected by HIPAA and no information will be shared with school personnel except in cases of Title IX required reporting.
Students who wish to be referred for behavioral and/or physical health treatment may ask for the help of any PSOM faculty or staff member, their peers, friends, and family. Those persons may contact Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), personal providers, or seek guidance through Student Health Services, or Student Intervention Services. These are confidential services, protected by HIPAA and no information will be shared with school personnel except in cases of Title IX required reporting.
The Senior Vice Dean for Medical Education, at the request of the Student Standards Committee (SSC) or other academic leadership, may recommend that a student undergo evaluation and/or treatment for suspected health problems by a consulting psychiatrist or other behavioral or health professional chosen by PSOM. This evaluation would serve to identify and/or address suspected academic, personal, and/or behavioral concerns that were brought to the attention of academic leadership.
The content and outcome of the evaluation will be confidential and available to the student. The provider’s recommendation(s) will be shared only with involved academic leadership and discussed with the student. Summary information may be shared with the Student Standards Committee only on a need-to-know basis to best support the student and develop/inform/approve any needed academic plan.
Policy for Involuntary Evaluation
PSOM may invoke the University of Pennsylvania’s policy of Involuntary Leave of Absence, which includes, “In most cases, the student will be required to undergo an immediate assessment of his or her psychological, psychiatric or other medical condition. This assessment will be performed by Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), the Student Health Service, or other appropriate professionals.”
Information related to the outcome of the evaluation will be considered private, but not necessarily confidential when determining if the student will be placed on an involuntary leave of absence. The evaluation will be sequestered and maintained separately from the permanent academic record, in the Office of the Senior Vice Dean for Medical Education. The information will be shared on an as-needed basis with the Senior Vice Dean for Medical Education and Associate and Assistant Deans.
Policy Authors: Drafted by members of UMELT, revised by the Associate Director for Educational Academic Affairs.
References: Involuntary Leave of Absence
Governing Body: Undergraduate Medical Education Committee
|November 26, 2019
|January 1, 2020
|October 18, 2022
|Revised & Approved
|January 1, 2023