Medical Excuse Policy

Q: What is the general policy?

The student health service does not provide individual “notes” for students to give to professors regarding their personal health information. When a student is ill, the staff of the student health center may encourage that student to avoid going to class. Though the reasons we support student absence from class will vary, medical conditions such as a high fever, the need for bed rest, or limitation of function due to pain or altered mobility are a few of the more common ones. In the event that the medical staff encourages a student to avoid class, the Worth Health Center will encourage the student to get in touch with professors directly, to alert them to the change in their health status.

How can I provide verification of illness to a professor?

Often a professor will ask for verification of illness from the health center. The health center does not give individual “sick notes” to professors. However, if the student is seriously ill, we will provide a confidential email to the student’s class dean to alert the dean to the need for a medical absence. We encourage students to get in touch with their class dean as soon as they are able so that the dean might know how best to support the student through a serious illness. Class deans are a helpful resource in regard to communicating with faculty and helping students access other resources.

Note that a student must be seen and diagnosed with an illness in the health center in order for the health center to generate a notification to the dean. The health center does not provide information without seeing the student.

If you have any questions regarding the dean’s note process, please feel free to talk with our medical staff or to contact the director, Beth Kotarski, for more information:

Email: bkotars1@swarthmore.edu
Office phone: 610-328-8061 or 8058