The Princeton Review recently named Penn State’s University Health Services No. 1 in its 2013 edition.
“I think the most important factor of what makes this an excellent student health service is the quality and commitment of the staff that work here, and they care tremendously about the work that they do. They are dedicated to do everything that they can to support a student’s health and wellness, and in my mind that is more important than anything else,” Director of University Health Services Dr. Margaret Spear said.
UHS is also accredited through the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Inc. The AAAHC program is a voluntary process and helps inspire excellence with health services.
“We provide an array of services focused on both health promotion and education and medical and clinical services for students, including treating acute and chronic illnesses, but we also provide services for students interested in prevention,” Spear said.
Programs for prevention include annual exams for women and men’s health as well as labs, x-rays, physical therapy and many other services.
The University of Texas at Austin’s University Health Services ranked No. 3 on the Princeton Review’s list.
Jamie Shutter, Director of University Health Services at The University of Texas said the health center there is different than other universities because of the number of services they offer and because they focus on educating parents of incoming students.
“We’re set apart in large measure by the breadth of services we provide — ranging from Urgent Care Services and a 24-Hour Nurse Advice Line to Sports Medicine and Women’s Health Services. We also reach out to students in many ways, providing free or low-cost flu shots at sites all over campus,” Shutter said.
The Princeton Review surveys students annually from 377 universities for their book, Jeanne Krier, from the Princeton Review said. The universities featured in the book are based on the Princeton Review’s opinion of their high academic performance.
Students answer a survey online and the answer to each question is then compared to the student bodies of other universities and then the Princeton Review ranks the answers, she said. The rankings are all based on Penn State students’ opinions, she said.
“The rankings are based on what students say on an 80-question survey completed online. It’s what Penn State students say compared to other student bodies in the other 377 schools,” Krier said.
The rankings for University Health Services are based on one single question in the entire survey. The question simply asked “How do you rate your school's health services/facilities?’ ”
Overall, Spear said she is happy with Penn State’s ranking.
“We are happy to be popular with Penn State students because it is very important to us what our students think of us, so for that value alone, it is and was very pleasing to us,” Spear said.