To the Students of Jacksonville State University:
Many of you have heard information and read social media posts about the future of student healthcare at JSU. To ensure that everyone has access to accurate information, here are some facts.
For the last two years, Jacksonville State University has been examining its student healthcare system. Though JSU has been satisfied with the healthcare provided in the past, the university has been observing models currently used at other universities and investigating possibilities for future services with our students’ needs in mind.
In addition to studying health care at 10 other Southeastern regional universities, in 2011 JSU hired an external consulting firm, Lassiter and Associates, to survey students, faculty and staff. These results were presented at the Board of Trustees meeting in January 2012, at which point an ad hoc committee was formed to investigate options and needs based in part upon these survey results.
According to Dr. Rebecca Turner, Provost and Vice-President for Academic and Student Affairs at JSU, on Monday, October 15, the Trustees will discuss these options further. This is simply at a place of “discussion” at this point in time and “the only health center related item that will be on the agenda Monday is a recommendation from the chairman of the ad hoc committee on the student health center, Mr. Randy Jones, who is a trustee…We expect him to recommend to the other trustees from his committee, that Dr. Meehan and his staff be given the authority to negotiate a health services contract with an external provider.”
The “external provider” in question is North East Alabama Regional Medical Center.
Dr. Turner states that the university is “asking them to expand the service hours available to students, employees, and dependents of employees. We are asking them to include more primary care hours, more urgent care hours, and psychiatric medical care as an added service, which is currently unavailable to our JSU campus community.”
Any discussion of fee structures, insurance requirements and such at this point is premature. “However,” states Dr. Turner, “the potential provider has been asked to specify how services will be financed. An anticipated proposal should reveal those details. Our goal is for the JSU community to see expanded medical services available at the clinic, a convenience no one wants be without.”