Frequently Asked Parental Questions About Campus Health Topics:

What campus healthcare services are available to my student?
Regularly enrolled SSU students are eligible to receive free and low cost services as described on the web pages of the Sonoma State University Student Health Center (SHC) and Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) -   

Will I be notified if my student is treated at the Student Health Center or Counseling & Psychological Services? 
Federal and state confidentiality laws and professional ethical codes preclude healthcare and mental health providers from sharing such information without the written informed consent of the patient. Such consent is legally limited to circumstances that are in process or have already taken place and cannot be rendered in advance or on a blanket basis.  See

Will I be notified if my student is hurt or injured on campus?
Families are encouraged to establish their own communication mechanisms regarding medical or injury circumstances.  If the student is treated as an outpatient at the Student Health Center (SHC), the SHC expects that the student will inform family members in accordance with the student’s personal decisions and their family’s expectations.  Information from the SHC will be provided only at the student’s request with written consent.  Not all students hurt or injured on campus are seen by the Student Health Center.  Students with significant injures, or those injured outside of Student Health Center operating hours may be advised by campus personnel to seek care from an off campus provider.  SSU Police who are the 24/7 first responders for the campus, may call an ambulance to transport a significantly ill or injured student to a hospital.  If a student is so seriously injured that they are sent to a hospital and unable to act on their own behalf, family notification may occur, typically with the student’s consent via the treating hospital.  Residential Life may have their own processes for when significant injury or life threatening circumstances occur for students living in the SSU residential community.

What options are available to my student after hours, when the Student Health Center and Counseling and Psychological Services are closed?
See for a list of local after hours health care providers as well as health and mental health hotlines. Other after hours options (including the Student Health Center’s after hours nurse advice line) are also described on this website.  Campus Police are 24/7 emergency first responders and can be reached by dialing 707 664-4444 or by dialing 911 while on campus.  Calling 911 is the best option for for medical or other emergencies that occur off campus.

My student is taking an on-going prescription medication and receives refills by mail or in person from an off campus pharmacy.  Can the Health Center directly receive and store this medication for my student?
The Student Health Center cannot receive or store individual medications for students. Students concerned about the safety of their medication should purchase a small safe or lock box for this.  If the medication requires refrigeration, they should purchase a small dorm size refrigerator and locking mechanism for this.

 Does my student need health insurance?
Health insurance is not required for SSU students to use the Student Health Center or Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS).  The availability of most such services are funded by per semester mandatory health and counseling fees paid by all students at the time of registration, so most SHC and CAPS services are provided without charge to regularly enrolled SSU students or are heavily discounted. Neither the Health Center nor CAPS bill insurance, However, health insurance or similar coverage is strongly recommended to help students and their families cover the cost of off-campus medical needs such as urgent care or hospital visits, ambulance transport, specialty care, complex diagnostic tests, out of area care or other services that are beyond the scope or hours of operation of the Student Health Center or CAPS.  Students should have a basic understanding of any third party coverage they may have and always carry their insurance card with them.  For more detailed information, see .

Is alcohol a problem at Sonoma State University?
The illegal or unsafe use of alcohol and other drugs (including marijuana and prescription drugs) is potentially problematic in any setting.  Because these behaviors can interfere with student learning, the rights of others, SSU’s educational mission and our commitment to the health and safety of the campus community, Sonoma State University expects compliance with all policies, laws, regulations and common sense guidelines applicable to the use and misuse of alcohol and other substances.  To address these issues, SSU provides trainings, resources, and mechanisms to facilitate compliance as well as disciplinary interactions when necessary. In addition, since there is considerable evidence that parents and family members continue to play a critical role in the decision-making and success of their students, we strongly encourage parents and family members to continue to discuss mutual expectations for a healthy, goal-directed college experience with their students, including: the hazards of misusing alcohol and other drugs, the value of speaking-up for what’s right in unsettling circumstances, and understanding the potentially life-saving importance of a prompt 911 call under SSU’s Good Samaritan Amnesty Policy.

Resources for parents and family members include: