Frequently Asked Questions

What is University Health Services (UHS)?

UHS is UMass Amherst’s fully accredited health center, offering comprehensive care and referrals with a special focus on the needs and concerns of students.

Who can use UHS?

UHS serves UMass Amherst students, faculty and staff, along with their spouses, domestic partners and dependents. The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Department's Region 5 employees are eligible to use UHS, through a cooperative agreement. Ill or injured visitors can be seen at UHS on a fee-for-service basis.

When is UHS open?

Hours vary throughout the year; check the home page for our current schedule.

I need medical advice. What should I do?

Medical advice is available 24/7. During business hours, submit the Minute Nurse Triage Form; a nurse will call you back the same day if submitted by 4 p.m. After hours, call 413-577-5229 to speak with a nurse. For after-hours mental health emergencies, call 877-831-7421. In a life-threatening emergency, always call 911 for transportation to a hospital.

What constitutes an emergency?

Review a list of signs of a medical emergency.

Do I need an appointment?

Yes. UHS is open by appointment only. Please do not enter the building without an appointment.

  • Advance appointments are best for routine care and minor problems. Call 413-577-5101. If you have a UHS primary care provider, great! If not, we'll match you with one that meets your needs and preferences.
  • Same-day appointments get you seen quickly, at a time that's best for you. Call 413-577-5101. These appointments fill up fast – call early in the morning. Hours are posted on the home page.
  • Telehealth appointments are available to address a variety of health concerns. Call 413-577-5101 to schedule.
  • Questions? Need help? Submit the Minute Nurse Triage Form during health center hours.
  • Hearing or speech impairments? Access the UHS TTY system; call 413-545-5905.
  • After hours medical and mental health advice is available 24/7 by calling 413-577-5000.

Who’ll be taking care of me?

Our team includes board-certified physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, registered nurses, an optometrist, a nutritionist and certified medical assistants. Plus, specialists in areas such as acupuncture, obstetrics and gynecology, orthopedics and sports medicine have office hours at UHS.

What else does UHS have?

Our services include an eye care and optical center, women's health, nutrition, radiology, physical therapy, travel medicine and specialty clinics.

What about health insurance?

Massachusetts college students are required to have primary health insurance. Students with five or more credits are automatically enrolled into and billed for the Student Health Benefit Plan (SHBP). If you’re already covered by other primary insurance, you must waive the SHBP before the end of the add/drop period. 

Bring your health insurance card with you each time you come to UHS. If you’re covered under your parents’ insurance, ask them for a copy of the card; you’ll receive an ID card if you purchase the SHBP.  

UMass Amherst charges graduate students a mandatory Student Health Fee. This isn’t insurance, but works together with your primary plan to provide access to UHS, support UHS services and absorb costs insurance doesn’t cover.

Do I need a referral?

Patients insured by a health maintenance organization (HMO) or point-of-service (POS) plan which requires a referral from their primary care provider (PCP) must obtain a referral for care at UHS. When scheduling an appointment, you'll be reminded of this requirement and asked to provide your PCP's name and address. To avoid the need to obtain a referral, consider switching your PCP designation to a UHS provider.

Who’ll know I was seen at UHS?

By law, all UHS visits and medical records are confidential. No information can be released, either verbally or in writing, unless you sign a consent form. UHS bills your primary insurance for services provided. Your insurance company will mail you a document called an Explanation of Benefits. Typically, this does not include treatment details. Bills for things that aren’t covered by insurance are mailed from UHS. Because this can include sensitive information, make sure the address UHS has on file is where you want such materials sent.

How do I get copies of my medical or immunization records?

Check out the release of information section of this website; you'll find everything you need to know!

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