Student Referendum: “Student Health and Counseling Supplemental Fee”

Background Summary

Over the last several years, SHCS has lost revenue streams while expenses have steadily increased. SHCS has managed revenues and reduced expenses to the greatest extent possible, but has reached the point where additional revenue is required to support the services offered without reductions.

Consequences of Not Passing the “Student Health and Counseling Supplemental Fee”

Without additional revenue, SHCS will have to cut staffing levels starting next year. 88% of SHCS expenses are for salaries and benefits – therefore reductions would come from direct services. Reductions in staffing would result in some combination, or all, of the following:

  • Longer waits for mental health and primary care appointments.
  • Elimination of evening appointments.
  • Plans to offer online video-based services (primary care and mental health appointments and nurse triage) would not be implemented.
  • Mindfulness workshops and other outreach programs would be discontinued.
  • Students who waived UC SHIP would have services reduced or all services moved to a full-fee pay out-of-pocket system.
  • Increased wait times for TB screenings and vaccinations.
  • Reduced phone access when calling SHCS for questions.

95.4% of students accessed SHCS for a face to face visit** with primary care provider, mental health practitioner, nurse or dietician last year. This data indicates that a cut to SHCS services will impact virtually the entire student body.

(** The source data for this statistic is visit count data from the SHCS electronic medical record system for the time period 9/1/16 to 8/31/17. The system report includes unique students who completed visits. Visits with the practitioners noted above were included. Nurse visits would include TB skin test placements or vaccinations)

 

Fee Description

How the fee will be used – To support salaries and benefits for SHCS staff and programs. This includes physicians, nurse practitioners, registered nurses, administrative staff, mental health counselors, and the dietician.

Proposed Fee – The proposed quarterly fee for the next six years is listed below.

  • The quarterly fee would be paid by any student registering in fall, winter, spring or summer terms.
  • After year six:
    • The Student Health Advisory Committee (SHAC) - which is comprised of students and faculty representatives from each school and two members of the Graduate and Professional Student Association (GPSA); one representing the professional schools and one representing graduate students - will evaluate SHCS budget needs and make a recommendation for a potential increase to be reviewed and approved by the chancellor.
    •  If approved by the chancellor, final approval, per policy, is required from the president of the University of California.
    • LIMITS to any increase:
      • Recommended increases will only cover cost of living increases.     
      • Any increase greater than 5% would require a full student referendum vote.

 

  Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Year 6
Quarterly Fee (for any quarter registered)* $48.00 $50.00 $53.00 $56.00 $59.00 $63.00

*The fee shown INCLUDES 25% return-to-aid required by  UC policy, which goes to need-based financial aid. 

 

Student Government Review

SHCS leadership met with six student government organizations and student committees to explain the need for the fee and allow those student groups to ask more detailed questions about the proposal on behalf of the student body. These students’ feedback was instrumental in developing this initiative.

 

Annual Reporting

SHCS will prepare an annual report for the Student Health Advisory Committee (SHAC) detailing how the fee revenue was spent. SHAC is a standing committee comprised of student and faculty representatives from each school and two members of the Graduate and Professional Student Association (GPSA) - one representing the professional schools and one representing graduate students.

 

Voting

A YES vote means:

A NO vote means:

You support a new quarterly fee to support the services of Student Health and Counseling Services.

You do NOT support a new quarterly fee to support the services of Student Health and Counseling Services.

Things To Know about the Vote!

  • Voting begins April 9th.
  • You will receive an electronic ballot via email. For most students, your ballot will be included in the GPSA election email.
  • Voter turnout of 12% of the student body is required for the vote to qualify.
    Turnout for the April vote the last three years averaged 10.3% - so please try to vote!
  • A simple majority vote is required for the measure to pass.

 

Ballot Question

Do you approve of a new “Student Health and Counseling Supplemental Fee” (to be charged to all registered students in fall, winter, spring, and summer quarters) to support services offered by Student Health and Counseling Services? Yes or No?

The fee for the first six years is listed below. The fee would only increase thereafter upon a recommendation from the Student Health Advisory Committee (composition described above) approved by the chancellor with the following limits:

  • Recommended increases will only cover cost of living increases.
  • Any increase greater than 5% would require a full student referendum vote.

SHCS will report to the Student Health Advisory Committee annually on how the fee revenue is spent.

  Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Year 6
Quarterly Fee $48.00 $50.00 $53.00 $56.00 $59.00 $63.00

 

Additional Information

This fee would be treated the same as any other mandatory fee for graduate students. This means it would be covered by your department or a fellowship if your current tuition and fees are covered.
Utilization of SHCS Services: 2016-17 Academic Year**
  • 95.4% of enrolled students accessed a face-to-face visit with a SHCS clinician.
      - primary care, counseling, psychiatry, dietician, RN
  • 20% more individual students accessed mental health counseling and psychiatry services resulting in a 20% increase in visits.
  • 24% of enrolled students accessed SHCS mental health services.
  • 70% of enrolled students accessed a primary care visit.


** Data source for all statistics is the SHCS electronic medical record. The EMR reports on total visits and numbers of unique students with completed visits (cancelled and no-shows are excluded). Timeframe for visit data is 9/1/16 through 8/31/17.
Did you waive the UC Student Health Insurance Plan (UC SHIP)?
Students who waived UC SHIP can still be seen at Student Health and Counseling Services (SHCS) – often free of charge!  You may currently access the following with NO COPAY: 
Services which can be received at SHCS, but require you to utilize and coordinate with your health insurance company: 
  • Referrals from SHCS providers to specialists
  • Lab work to any lab other than Quest
  • Radiology Tests
  • Prescriptions
  • Immunizations (may receive, pay out of pocket and submit to your insurance)
  • IUD placements (may receive, pay out of pocket and submit to your insurance)
Will my UC SHIP premiums increase next year?
2018-19 will have the smallest premium increase we have seen in over 20 years. The increase for the 2018-19 plan year will be 0.6%.

Part of the way UC SHIP premiums are held in check is by the coordination of care provided by SHCS for both physical and mental health needs. SHCS helps coordinate care so that the plan avoids unnecessary test and procedures, while delivering timely care that is student-focused with exceptional access.

Reducing services available at SHCS would drive that volume to the health insurance plan and could put an upward pressure on premiums.

 

FAQs

How do I vote?
On Monday, April 9th you received an email from the “Student Life listserv” with the subject “GPSA 2018-19 Elections & SHCS Referendum”. Search your email for “GPSA Election” and click on the link. After you complete the GPSA Election section “Click to Continue” and you will see the “Student Health and Counseling Supplemental Fee” referendum.

Why is SHCS proposing a new supplemental fee?
Without additional income, SHCS will have to reduce services and hours. Over several years, changes have taken place that decreased Student Health and Counseling Services’ (SHCS) revenue and increased expenses - putting pressure on the SHCS budget. SHCS has lost Student Services Fee revenue covering benefit increases and merits, incurred new mandatory university-wide expenses (such as the network recharge, centralized Human Resources fees and higher electronic medical record support costs) and experienced growth in demand, most notably - demand for mental health services. As a direct service provider, salaries and benefits account for 88% of SHCS’s expense base and these expenses increase each year at a rate that is outstripping any increases in revenue.

Who is able to access SHCS?
All registered students who pay full registration fees, including students who waived UC SHIP. 95.4% of students accessed SHCS for a face-to-face visit** with a primary care provider, mental health practitioner, nurse or dietician last year. This means that a cut to SHCS services will impact the vast majority of the student body.

(** The source data for this statistic is visit count data from the SHCS electronic medical record system for the time period 9/1/16 to 8/31/17. The system report includes unique students who completed visits. Visits with the practitioners noted above were included. Nurse visits would include TB skin test placements or vaccinations).

If I am a graduate student, will this fee be covered by my program?
This fee would be treated the same as any other mandatory fee for graduate students. This means it would be covered by your department or a fellowship if your current tuition and fees are covered.

When would the fee begin?
Fall 2018. The fee will be charged to all registered students in fall, winter, spring and summer quarters.

How much will the fee increase each year?
The fee would increase between $2 -$4 per quarter (as shown below). After year six, the fee would only increase if recommended by the SHAC and approved by the chancellor. Any increase is limited in the following ways:

  • Recommended increases will only cover inflationary and cost of living increases.
  • Any increase greater than 5% would require a full student referendum vote.
  Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Year 6
Quarterly Fee (for any quarter registered)* $48.00 $50.00 $53.00 $56.00 $59.00 $63.00

 

If I waive UCSHIP, why should I vote “yes” for the new supplemental fee?
Students who waived UC SHIP can access most SHCS services at no cost to you. This includes primary care, mental health counseling and psychiatry visits, and visits with the registered dietician. You may also access all Hump Day outreach programs.

In addition, SHCS supports all students’ well-being and success by working closely with your school and faculty and staff around issues that impact students such as responding to recent student deaths and supporting students during the northern California wildfires.

What are the consequences of not approving this fee?
Without additional revenue, SHCS will have to cut staffing levels. A reduction in staffing would result in some combination, or all, of the following:

  • Longer waits for mental health and primary care appointments.
  • Elimination of evening appointments.
  • Plans to offer online video-based services (primary care and mental health appointments and nurse triage) would not be implemented.
  • Mindfulness workshops and other outreach programs would be discontinued.
  • Students who waived UC SHIP would have services reduced or all services moved to a full-fee pay out-of-pocket system.
  • Increased wait times for TB screenings and vaccinations.
  • Reduced phone access when calling SHCS for questions.
     

Why is 25% of the fee being returned to UCSF students in the form of financial aid?
According to University of California policy, any compulsory campus-based student fee, approved as either a new fee or an increase to an existing fee, shall provide for fee revenue for local need-based financial aid ("return-to-aid") to be set aside in an amount equal to at least 25% of the total new fee, or fee increase, as appropriate. These funds are not conferred to Student Health and Counseling, but to need-based financial aid.

Has Student Health consulted with any student groups to discuss the provisions of this fee proposal?
SHCS leadership met with several student government organizations including GPSA, ASGD, the Student Services Fee Committee and the Student Health Advisory Committee (SHAC) to explain the need for this new fee and allow those student groups to raise detailed questions on behalf of the student body. Student feedback was instrumental in the development of this fee proposal.

 

Have Questions?

Please email us if you have any further questions or need more information.