York College of PA Partners with TimelyMD for Virtual Health and Counseling Resources
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, colleges and universities have been striving to provide student services in new ways that meet changing needs. Health and counseling services, in particular, have been challenged to address the increasing requirement for services accessible online and around the clock. York College recently partnered with TimelyMD to offer full-time undergraduate students equitable access to medical and mental health support through the TimelyCare platform.
TimelyCare serves as a 24/7 virtual extension of campus health and counseling center resources. Through TimelyCare on their phone or other device, York College students can select from a wide-ranging menu of virtual care options from licensed physicians and counselors in all 50 states – at no cost and with no insurance requirements. The platform includes a range of services: mental health counseling, on-demand emotional support, medical care, psychiatric care, health coaching, basic needs assistance, faculty and staff guidance, and digital self-care content.
“TimelyCare is a virtual service provider that’s a wraparound for our current counseling and health services,” said Darrell Wilt, Director of Counseling Services. “It is available 365/24/7, which adds a very valuable point of access for students. If something is going on in the middle of the night, they can call a number and get an immediate response. They can also click on the app, log in, put in their request, and in a short amount of time, they’ll be able to talk with somebody. Urgency is really important, and that will help students.”
The ease of access to TimelyCare may also prompt some students who have never contacted the campus Health Center or Counseling Center to reach out, according to Wilt. “TimelyMD reports that 60 percent of students who have never accessed counseling services will use this service,” he said.
Another important component of TimelyCare is that its Virtual Clinic provides licensed service providers, including those who provide psychiatric services and can prescribe medication, despite being virtual for many conditions. “This is good, in particular, because York County has huge wait times for people seeking out psychiatric services,” said Wilt.
The network of providers accessed through TimelyCare are also chosen carefully to provide a diverse, culturally competent provider for every student. “TimelyMD promotes diversity,” said Dr. Rick Satterlee, Dean of Campus Life and Student Development. “Students have the opportunity to choose somebody they are comfortable with. And they may choose a clinician who is licensed in their state as well. This has been one of our biggest challenges for out-of-state students: that continuity of services.”
Students have unlimited access to call and speak with someone through the service, and they have the opportunity for 12 free virtual sessions with a provider throughout the academic year. Or, they may schedule time with the on-campus Counseling Center. “On average, students access about five sessions per academic year in our Counseling Center,” said Wilt. “The Counseling Center would continue to see students on campus when they are in class.”