Medical Excuse Policy

Q: What is the general policy?

The office of student health and wellness 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 and wellness 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, Student Health and Wellness Service 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 by calling 610-328-8058.


Familiarize yourself with the attendance policy for each of your courses. Attendance policies for each course are determined by the course professor. It is your responsibility to be in direct communication with your professors in advance regarding any course requirements, including attendance. Some professors will also want you to provide a health confirmation email from your dean.


1.  Seek care. If you become ill or injured, seek care at the Student Health and Wellness Center or urgent/emergency care off-campus if needed. If you received off-campus urgent or emergency care, please follow up at the Student Health and Wellness Center with your discharge papers following your return to campus so the staff is sure that you have what you need.
2.  Sign a release. If you would like information relayed to your dean from the Student Health and Wellness Center, sign a release of information at your health center appointment. The Director of Student Health and Wellness will then email your dean, with a copy to you. 
3.  Email your professors, and email your dean. If you would like your dean to follow up to confirm health information to any of your professors, email your dean to make that request and state which professors should receive that information. Again, it is your responsibility to be in direct communication with your professors in advance regarding any course requirements, including attendance. But, your dean can also confirm info to your professors if you follow the above process. 
Note: In the event of a concussion or hospitalization, the Student Health and Wellness Center may contact your dean (with your consent) with a request to notify your professors without you emailing your dean - as you may be restricted in your ability to access email. 
4.  Talk with your dean. Your dean can help you navigate your health concern and your academics. Schedule a time to talk with your dean, if you would like additional academic support.
For information specific to concussions, please visit the Concussion website.
For information specific to disability accommodations, please visit the Student Disability Services website.