The Coronavirus pandemic has forced millions of college students across the country to adjust to online-only learning. Although the virus has disrupted classroom instruction, the reality is that every year, ordinary medical conditions lead to students leaving school and losing money. And we’re not talking about having the common cold, or making a trip to the on-campus health clinic. These medical conditions are proving to have a major impact on students nationwide.
The 2019 National Student Health Assessment from the American College Health Association data reveals some of the risks that college students and their families face today. As we all adjust in the time of COVID-19, you can see the common illnesses that have a big impact on students. The assessment surveyed more than 30,000 students across 58 different schools.
Common illnesses have a big impact on college completion
The most commonly reported illnesses that had an impact on completing a degree include concussion, mononucleosis (mono), pneumonia, and flu or flu-like illnesses.
During a normal semester, most schools provide a pro-rated refund through the fifth week of classes, according to a national study from Dec. 2019. This same study reports that 70 percent of schools have reported a growth in student medical withdrawals.
The ACHA assessment confirms the scale and impact of health conditions on college completion is real. The calculations are based on a total of 8.16 million full-time undergraduate students attending four-year non-profit institutions.
These four conditions that students report delayed their academic progress are estimated to have cost students and schools more than $1 billion annually! And that’s from preventable financial losses.
Health conditions may lead to an unexpected withdrawal
The ACHA data reveals other student health conditions that may also disrupt an academic term or lead to an unexpected student withdrawal. Nearly a quarter of students reported experiencing anxiety, followed by just under 20 percent reporting depression. Celiac disease, PTSD, eating disorders and bipolar disorder followed.
If you’re experiencing one of these health conditions while in college, you should know that that there are resources to help you get back on track to complete your education. GradGuard’s Tuition Insurance can provide refunds for tuition and academic fees if you unexpectedly need to leave school for a covered reason.