Old Student Health Services building to remain unoccupied

The new Student Health and Wellness Center that opened in June is now the official student clinic on campus. ORACLE PHOTO/MRIDULA SINGH

The Student Health Services (SHS) building located next to the bookstore will remain unoccupied, as no decisions have been made to determine what the space will be used for, according to Susanna Perez, communications and marketing officer at the SHWC.

All operations that the building used to house were moved to the new Student Health and Wellness Center (SHWC) located next to the Yuengling Center, which opened on May 15.

The original SHS building was built in 1989 and spanned 13,766 total square feet. The new $27 million SHWC encompasses 41,000 square feet, totaling an over 25,000 square foot difference.

“We had outgrown that building. The university recognized, especially with COVID, the need for health wellness support, additional behavioral and psychiatric support and the need to bring medical services convenient and affordable to students,” Perez said.

With 21 exam rooms and 25 offices, the original SHS building was not large enough for all employees and departments, according to Perez. Now, all the staffers have a larger space, with 68 exam rooms in the new building.

The new SHWC building has added staff in almost all departments too. They have hired more physicians, psychiatrists, nurses, receptionists and three times as many call center staff.

The increase in the amount of observation rooms in comparison to the old SHS building also allows for better privacy and more space, according to Perez.

Unlike the previous building, the SHWC also features special consultation rooms that have their own air conditioning unit to prevent the risk of spreading germs through air flow, she said.