Students met with University Health Services administrators Friday to recommend a series of possible changes for the health center.

Proposed changes include increasing the number of doctors in urgent care, improving turn-around time for mental hygiene appointments and accepting outside insurance policies in the health center’s pharmacy. Yale College Council members and students on UHS’ standing committee will hold three follow up meetings with UHS administrators to further discuss the suggestions, which were compiled by YCC members who solicited UHS concerns in dining halls at the end of last semester.

“I’m optimistic we’re going to either get through these or find out why they might not be possible,” YCC associate Jack Rubin ’02 said.

Many of the student recommendations focused on concerns about UHS’ mental hygiene department. In that area, students expressed the most concrete suggestions for improvement, Rubin said.

Ideas include shortening the time span between students’ initial evaluations and their assignment to a mental hygiene doctor, allowing students more input in the selection of their doctors and increasing the number of mental hygiene professionals.

The students also suggested UHS encourage every residential college’s assigned psychologist to hold office hours and become more involved in the college system.

The group also advocated increased publicity by UHS. They discussed distributing lists of recommended dental care providers to students, putting UHS suggestion boxes in college common areas and including an “Ask-the-Psychologist” column in the Yale Daily News.

YCC associate Donya Khalili ’02 said UHS officials met some of the changes with great enthusiasm, but were more hesitant about others.

Khalili said one of the more difficult changes to implement would be for the health center’s pharmacy to begin accepting outside insurance policies. Currently, UHS’ pharmacy does not accept some forms of outside insurance to pay for medications.

Khalili said she uses an outside insurance provider and has to travel to other local pharmacies to pick up her medicines.

Khalili said, although she is hoping for the change, she realizes accepting outside insurance policies would require more paperwork for the pharmacy.

“They seemed open and receptive to working with us,” Khalili said. “Everybody wants students to be getting medical care that is good and that students have confidence in.”

UHS administrators could not be reached for comment.

Rubin, Khalili and UHS standing committee members Caitlin Klevorick ’02 and Janey Lewis ’02 will meet with UHS administrators to discuss the suggestions further in the next few weeks.