Arguably one of the biggest perks to being enrolled at a college or university is the access to good healthcare at relatively low prices through your student health center. Things from basic, primary care to x-rays might be free or offered at a low price to students through the health center, making it easy to take better control of your own health while you’re in school.

Since college tends to wreak a bit of havoc on the average student’s body and health through things like high stress levels and changes in diet and exercising habits, having easy access to basic healthcare is something you should definitely take advantage of, whether you’re insured or not. The student health fee you pay along with your tuition and other campus fees every semester entitles you to all sorts of services. Here are a few ways to take advantage of them and stay on top of your health and well-being.

Use the student health center instead of urgent care centers or walk-in clinics.
Through a basic internet search or a quick visit to the student health center, you can probably get a straightforward pricing list for different services the center offers. More often than not, simple office visits with a physician, PA, or CNA are free of charge for enrolled students who have paid their health fee. So, if you’ve got a sore throat, make an appointment with your health center instead of the clinic or urgent care center off campus.

Fill prescriptions through your school’s pharmacy.
If your campus offers a pharmacy like many campuses now do, have prescriptions filled there, especially if you were given the scripts at the student health center. You might end up paying a good amount less than you would elsewhere, even with insurance. If your school doesn’t have its own pharmacy, they probably have a preferred pharmacy locally, so opt to have any health center scripts sent there.

student health center

Go to the student health center for sexual health check-ups and screenings.
Many schools offer free or low-cost STD and STI screenings right in your student health center. The lab work can usually be done right there and results might even be ready more quickly than if you had the tests done elsewhere. You may also be able to get a certain allotment of free condoms through your school’s health center or wellness center. As for birth control and oral contraceptives, you may also be able to obtain these for free or at a low cost through your school.

Get up to date on immunizations.
As a student, you probably have immunization requirements that might end up causing a hold to be put on your school account if you aren’t up to date on your shots. My undergraduate university had an immunization office right inside the health center, where students could get the immunizations they needed on a sliding scale basis. A quick call to your student health center or checking their website can probably tell you what your particular school offers.