Student Health Services Medical Excuse Policy

Texas A&M University views class attendance as an academic issue and as an individual student responsibility. Students are expected to attend class, complete all assignments, and to be honest with their professors regarding their ability to complete their academic work. SHS encourages students who need to miss a class, lab, quiz or exam due to illness or injury to notify faculty prior to the class that they are unable to attend, and to follow the instructions provided on the course syllabus. Additionally, SHS encourages faculty members to have a conversation with the student that allows them to present their situation and identify how they can fulfill their academic responsibilities while accommodating their short-term illness or injury.

SHS encourages students to practice self-care at home for many common illnesses. This speeds their recovery and reduces the spread of infections such as colds, flu and gastrointestinal illnesses throughout the campus community. SHS has invested significant resources into a 24-hour Nurse Advice Line (Dial-A-Nurse) which makes it very convenient for students to receive self-care instructions for a variety of medical conditions at no charge. These nurses also educate students about when they need to seek medical attention at the student health center. For more information on Dial-A-Nurse, please visit the SHS Services page.

When a student’s condition necessitates a visit to our clinic, SHS can provide a confirmation of the medical visit in accordance with Student Rule 7, Attendance, specifically section 7.1.6-Illness or Injury that is too severe or contagious for the student to attend class. Faculty members may use this document when deciding to excuse an absence for medical reasons. Granting an excused absence falls within the purview of, and at the sole discretion of, the faculty.

Occasionally, students will experience more serious health issues, injuries or hospitalizations. In these circumstances, SHS works with the student to provide a reasonable assessment of how long they will be out of class and when they can resume their usual activities. Additionally, SHS may connect students to other campus resources such as the Student Counseling Service, Student Assistance Services and Disability Services when their unique health issue would benefit from their involvement.

This SHS medical excuse policy is consistent with recommendations from the American College Health Association and the policies of our peer institutions. It also reflects our commitment to maintaining patient confidentiality, teaching students how to use healthcare resources appropriately, and supporting meaningful dialogue between students and faculty.