Health Center complaints rise over fall semester


Jacob Hoffman

The Health center doors are closed off to students and only open for scheduled appointments.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic, the Student Health Center has faced backlash from students in regards to how the handling of post COVID-19 restrictions and daily operations of the Health Center have gone.

Students are disappointed at the way they feel they are treated when trying to be seen in the health center by having to go through COVID-19 testing if they have any symptoms.

Senior Jacob Hoffman expresses his frustrations mostly focused on how the health center seems to do everything they can to not have to deal with the health issues students may be facing.

“It just feels like when you have any kind of issue you have to try and call them and then they want to send you to an outside source without any further explanation on what to do. They just tell you to go here for help,” said Hoffman.

Patricia Owens, a registered nurse at the health center, states that this issue is not due to the requirements of Ashland, but those of the county.

“The CDC sends guidelines to the state and then the state passes down those guidelines to the counties. From there, the county health officials choose how strict we are about the guidelines. We can only be as strict or more strict than the guidelines, we cannot be less strict,” said Owens.

“The whole walk-in clinic that we as students pay for has been mostly done away with and we are now forced to call in and be put on a waitlist type operation which has been a big inconvenience for me and several of my friends,” said senior Tristan Vaugn.

Owens also stated that this issue is because COVID-19 is still an ongoing pandemic.

“Covid is still a pandemic, [and] once it becomes an endemic, we will be able to start going off of Telehealth and to more in person and I really want to put that out there that this is our goal,” said Owens.

Both Vaugn and Hoffman noted if you call in and tell the Health Center you have any kind of symptom, the first thing they do is say you have COVID-19 and want to get you isolated.

“They made me and everyone I know scared to come in because even if you just have allergy symptoms they treat you like you’ve got Covid and try to send you off and no one actually wants to be honest with them anymore,” Vaughn said.

Owens answered that this was never intended to happen, but because of COVID-19 having so many symptoms it could feel like just a strong headache, but you could potentially have COVID-19.

“Two of the cases we had this year originally came to us as just having ear aches so we still have to be very careful and have them tested before they can come in,” said Owens.

Owens also noted that no one is denied service at any point and wanted everyone to know that if you test negative from a rapid test of the Flu and COVID-19, you are invited to come into the Health Center that same day.