There is no nurse or medical official to go to when you’re sick on campus. Let’s say if someone was hurt playing basketball or if a student were to get a high fever that couldn’t be broken. They would have to find a to a doctor to go to or go to the hospital. So when students are sick and can’t afford to go to the hospital, where does that leave us? Well, either we get better, get worse, or we give in, go to the hospital and get stuck with a bill bigger than a car payment. Not only does Blackburn not offer health care on campus, but they also do not offer any type of insurance to make things easier for students. When I say insurance I’m talking about the students who live on campus that are from out of state or exchange students. They may have insurance but hospitals or other medical institutes will not accept them because their insurance is out of state. Even if they do accept students the hospital will bill people as soon as insurance refuses to pay. A big problem with that is that certain insurances refuse to pay for doctor or hospital visits out of state of where the insurance is held. Dean of Students Abbey Hardin wasn’t sure when the last time Blackburn had a nurse, but she said it had to have been decades.
There is no budget for a nurse at Blackburn, hence why we don’t have one. If there was a nurse at Blackburn it would have to be a “nurse practitioner, physician’s assistant, or physician.” She says it is “budget prohibitive” to have a person with their skills at Blackburn.
Does Blackburn really need some of the things it’s paying for more than having a medical professional on campus? Hardin says this isn’t a problem because the Macoupin County Public Health Department (MCPHD) works with Blackburn when students are in need of medical attention. She said MCPHD have access to “medical, dental, and counseling resources” and are located only a few blocks away from campus, giving students easy access. She also said “They work with students to either use their private insurance, Medicaid, or a sliding scale fee based on income.” Although it would be nice and more convenient it seems the closest thing students at Blackburn will get to a nurse anytime soon is MCPHD.