The pursuit of medicine is stressful for many. That's why U-M Medical School emphasizes the importance of maintaining a balanced life between academic studies and personal well-being.
As a student, you have access to excellent health care, including:
- A medical student mental health program, established in 1996, and redesigned in 2021 to provide no-cost psychological and psychiatric services for all UMMS students.
- A Student contemplation room in the Taubman Health Sciences Library offers private space where students can go to reflect, practice mindfulness, and/or meditation.
- The U-M School of Dentistry offers complete dental checkups to students at a discounted fee.
- The University Health Service offers comprehensive outpatient services to students.
All enrolled medical students are required to have health care insurance coverage. This requirement may be fulfilled by maintaining an existing healthcare plan (most likely coverage under an parental plan), or enrollment in a healthcare plan offered through the University of Michigan (GradCare for medical students or the Domestic Student Health Insurance Plan (DSHIP) through the University Health Services for all U of M students). It will be your responsibility to determine which healthcare plan is best for you. Neither the Medical School nor the University will assume any responsibility for your acts, errors, or omissions in determining comparable health care coverage.
For more information on the University healthcare plans, please visit the websites below:
- GradCare Health Insurance Plan: https://hr.umich.edu/benefits-wellness/health-well-being/health-plans/gradcare
- Domestic Student Health Insurance Plan (DSHIP): https://www.uhs.umich.edu/dship
For more information on other possible health insurance options visit:
You are eligible to enroll in Dental Option 1, 2 or 3. Enrollment is not automatic and there is a monthly cost for this coverage. The monthly premium will be charged to your student account.
Disability Income Insurance Program
The University of Michigan Medical School enrolls you in a Disability Program through the Med Plus Advantage program. This LTD benefit with pay you a monthly benefit in the event that you become disabled. This plan also gives you important options when you complete medical school.
The benefits of this plan include:
Monthly Benefit: $1,500
Loan Payoff Benefit (to be paid in part of full upon meeting the definition of Permanent and Total Disability): $225,000
Benefit Waiting Period: If a claim for LTD benefits is approved, benefits become payable after a student has been continuously disabled for 90 days
Maximum Benefit Period: Benefits until Retirement while disabled (SSNRA)
To get 24/7/365 access to your certificate which contains complete details about your Long-Term Disability plan, visit: https://www.medplusadvantage.com/ and enter ID number: 644215
You can also access claims forms, brochures and contact information
When you graduate, your group long-term disability insurance is "portable" into residency and practice, and may be continued. If you decide to continue your coverage, your benefit will increase to $2,000 a year for pt/2nd years and $2,500 for 3rd+ year of residency.
To request a consultation about continuing or converting your coverage,
Liability Coverage for Students Taking part in Clinical Experiences
The Office of Medical Student Education (OMSE) receives many questions concerning liability coverage for students doing clinical experiences. OMSE suggests the following guidelines for determining if an activity is covered by our liability policy:
- If the student is working in a clinical setting for credit toward the M.D. degree, he or she is covered by our liability policy.
- If the student is working with one of our faculty members (including adjunct faculty) in an activity which enhances his or her education and that faculty member is supervising that student, he or she is covered by our liability insurance. (Example: A clinical student on an Educational Leave of Absence to do research, arranges to work in the clinic with an individual faculty member once a week.)
- Students engaging in such activities while on leave of absence status must get approval of the Associate Dean for Student Programs and must register their activity with the Office of Medical Student Education. The student is responsible for completing a brief form (available at OMSE) and obtaining the supervising faculty member's signature. Completed forms will be kept on file in the OMSE office.
- If a student is involved in a mentoring or shadowing program (in which he or she spends time in a clinical setting as an observer) to enhance his or her education, outside the University of Michigan Hospital setting, and the program is an approved program through a student organization or clinical department, he or she is covered by our liability insurance. If the student has arranged to do such an experience independently, he or she must get prior approval from the Associate Dean for Medical Student Education. The Associate Dean will write a letter to the supervising physician (and copy the student) granting approval in these circumstances.
Students accepted into the University of Michigan Medical School must provide written documentation of certain immunizations or proof of immunity (e.g., dates of vaccinations or positive antibody titers) as part of the process for entering medical school.
An immunization form is made available to the student at the time of their acceptance that must be completed and returned to the Office of Medical Student Eduction prior to Orientation. This form becomes a part of the student's record and is retained throughout the student's enrollment.
Immunizations can be obtained at the University Health Service or through a personal physician or clinic of the student's choice. It is the student's responsibility to pay for all testing and/or vaccinations.
Some students may not be notified of acceptance until the spring or summer just before classes start in August. The vaccination series for Hepatitis B, administered in three (3) steps, requires 6 months to complete.
Thus, whether the student has been accepted or is still awaiting notification of acceptance, she/he should begin the series as soon as possible and plan to finish during the first year. The University Health Service, local physicians, or clinics can provide all or any part of the series.
All students are required to receive immunization with MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine unless they can provide proof on the completed and signed form of one of the following:
- 2 doses of live attenuated measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine or 1 MMR dose and a measles booster vaccine.
- Serologic evidence of immunity to measles, mumps, and rubella.
All students will be required to receive Hepatitis B vaccine unless they show proof of the following:
- Serologic evidence of immunity to Hepatitis B.
- Prior receipt of Hepatitis B vaccine (with appropriate documentation).
All students will be required to provide documentation of a baseline Tuberculin skin test before Orientation, unless they have a previous history of a positive skin test or prior exposure to BCG.
Students testing positive will be asked to undergo a blood test (QFT) to rule out active tuberculosis.
All students will be required to have received 2 doses of Varicella vaccine or Serologic evidence of immunity.
All students will be required to receive a Tetanus (Td) booster every 10 years, including a one-time adult dose of pertussis (Tdap).
This immunization policy is in effect to protect the student, and the patients that the student will come in contact with. This immunization documentation is a requirement of OHSA.
Student cooperation will facilitate entrance into Medical School and help provide a smooth transition through each year.
All requirements are subject to change.
August 2021 Announcement:
After a year of collaboration between medical students, the Office of Medical Student Education, and the Interim Executive Vice Dean for Academic Affairs, we are happy to announce that the Medical Student Mental Health Program is being re-visioned. Through institutional support, students will now be able to access psychological care and psychiatric services at no cost as part of their enrollment in the University of Michigan Medical School. Funding went into effect July 1st, and since that time there has already been an increase in utilization of psychiatric services. We are still in the process of hiring mental health therapists, and implementing opt-out mental health screenings, called M-Checks. The therapy program will be available through Michigan Medicine’s Office of Counseling and Workplace Resilience, and currently has space in the B wing of the Med Sci I Building.
Medical School Mental Health Services
Psychological Services (Therapy) – COMING SOON
Dedicated therapists for medical students are currently being hired and will be housed within Michigan Medicine's Office of Counseling and Workplace Resilience.
The MSMH program provides students with confidential psychiatric evaluations, evidence-based treatment, and referrals to both internal and community-based therapists and psychiatrists for long-term management if needed. All evaluations are done by faculty psychiatrists with no trainee involvement, and the program is currently staffed by Drs. Jennifer Votta and Karla Blackwood. We are committed to supporting our students’ mental health needs throughout their medical training.
Make an Appointment
Call Amanda Brown, administrative assistant at the Medical School Mental Health program, at 734-763-9853. The office is open Monday through Friday, 8am-5pm. Identify yourself as a medical student when you call. If Amanda is not available to take your call, you will be prompted to leave a voicemail. If this occurs, you should leave a message with your name, phone number, email address, and identify yourself as a medical student who would like to schedule an appointment. Amanda will respond to your message as soon as possible.
For emergencies and after-hours needs, please call the Psychiatry ER at 734-936-5900.
As of July 1, 2021, there is no cost to students for psychiatric care through the MSMH program. We are now also hiring therapists for the program, and while we as yet do not have free therapy services, these will be coming in fall 2021. Dedicated therapists for medical students will be housed within Michigan Medicine's Office of Counseling and Workplace Resilience (OCWR), and more details for scheduling will be forthcoming.
All contacts with MSMH are confidential. MSMH psychiatrists do not conduct psychiatric evaluations required by the Dean’s Office and do not provide information to the Dean’s Office except upon written request by a student (with the exception of certain critical or life-threatening situations). While records of evaluation and treatment become part of your medical record, all medical records in the U-M Health System are confidential.
Resources to find therapists:
CAPS Case Management Program: CAPS Case Managers will help any UM student find therapists who accept their health insurance. To meet with a case manager, students should do the following:
Step 1: Schedule an Initial Consultation. You can schedule online or by phone here. Currently all appointments are virtual. Students will need to schedule this appointment even if they are not interested in receiving therapy services from CAPS and only want to use the Case Management service.
Step 2: During the Initial Consultation, the student should say that they are interested in finding a community provider but having trouble. Often the staff member who does the Initial Consultation can help them.
Step 3: If the staff member who completes the Initial Consultation cannot help the student (ex. the student has less common insurance), the staff member will schedule them an appointment with a case manager who can assist in more detail.
CAPS also maintains the Finding Your Community Provider Database. Students should call providers directly to see if they are accepting new patients.
Huron Valley Consultation Services (HVCS)
Is a private nonprofit outpatient clinic located in Ann Arbor, offering comprehensive services to medical students who prefer non-UM affiliated providers. HVCS accepts Blue Cross, Blue Care Network, UM Premier Care, Bluecaid, Medicare, Priority Health and many other insurances. Only medical students and house officers may make an appointment by calling the director, Alex Martinez. Please call Alex Martinez at 734-662-6300, ext. 12 and please let him know you are a medical student in order to inform the scheduling process. Please note: this is not an after-hours counseling center.
The National Suicide Prevention Hotline
Students can call the hotline at 1-800-273-8255
The Hotline provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress.
Psychology Today’s Find a Therapist is one of the most comprehensive and regularly updated therapist databases online.
Students can also call their health insurance provider directly (there is typically a 1-800 number on the back of insurance cards) for a list of local therapists who take their insurance. Students should then call those therapists to see if they are accepting new patients.
M-Home Peer Support The M-Home Peer Support Advocacy medical student group provides confidential, 24/7 support for medical students at all phases of the curriculum. Advocates are available by email or by pager. If you are interested in speaking to an advocate, please refer to the Information about the Paging System:
1. From the med student gateway, click on "Paging" or follow this link
2. Type in "peer" into the search bar (it will come up as "Peer Mentoring")
3. Click on the pager # (i.e. 37586) or the number of the person it is being forwarded to.
4. Type your message at the bottom under the NON-CLINICAL page. Make sure to include your name and return phone number or email. If you send a page without your contact information you will not be reached out to. If you accidentally send a page without your contact info, just send another non-clinical page explaining the previous message was from you and add your contact information!
Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center (SAPAC)24-hour crisis line 734- 936-3333
The Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center provides free and confidential crisis intervention, advocacy, and support for survivors of sexual assault, intimate partner violence, stalking and sexual harassment who are University of Michigan students, faculty and staff. Students can reach SAPAC during office hours by calling 734-764-7771 or visiting their office on central campus (ground floor of the Michigan Union, 1551 West Quad, 541 Thompson Street.
University Health Services
UHS offers a variety of helpful mental health services. UHS primary care providers evaluate mental health concerns from a medical perspective, which may identify underlying causes and treatment opportunities. Specialists for sleep, psychiatry, and eating disorders provide consultation, diagnosis and treatment. Care Managers support patients with case management and referrals. Wolverine Wellness offers Wellness Coaching and Collegiate Recovery Program. See their website for more details and to make an appointment.