Student Health Center FAQs

There are several ways to schedule appointments at the Student Health Center. Enter the RIT Wellness Portal and select appt scheduling or if what you need is not available or you are uncertain, select chat to text with one of our staff. Our staff are also ready to speak with you by phone at 585-475-2255. We do hold some appointments in reserve for urgent needs so please connect by phone or chat if you have an urgent need and can’t find a suitable appointment. Learn more about appointments and hours

As young adults, students are responsible for notifying family and friends regarding illness or injury. RIT staff work with students to involve their parents/guardians.

As an RIT student, you will work with the hospital to make a plan to communicate with your parents/family. Should you be involved in a life-threatening event, your parents/family will receive notification from the hospital and/or RIT. Now is a great time to have a conversation with your parents/family about how/when you will be in contact with them and what information they will be sharing.

The Student Health Center doesn’t administer allergy shots. We encourage students to connect with a local Allergy/Immunology practice if you need to continue injections.

RIT has a limited supply of medication for purchase if prescribed during a health center visit. You may also have your medications delivered to campus. Learn more about our medication services

RIT Dining has a Registered Dietitian (RD) on staff who supports students with food allergies or dietary restrictions to navigate on-campus dining. The Dining RD can also help set up special dietary accommodations necessary to meet students’ needs. Learn more 

The RIT Student Health Center Registered Dietitian provides Medical Nutrition Therapy for students who have a medical condition impacting their diet, for example, Type 2 Diabetes or Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Additionally, students can make a nutrition appointment with this RD or a Nutrition Educator if they have general nutrition questions and/or would like feedback on their current diet. To make an appointment, call 585-475-2255 or go to wellnessportal.rit.edu. Learn more about Nutrition Services at RIT

Students are responsible for notifying professors that they are unable to attend due to illness. For COVID-19 isolation, the secure message sent by the Student Health Center may be shared if documentation is needed. Faculty will work with each student to ensure academic continuity.

Respiratory Virus FAQs (COVID-19, Influenza, RSV)

These infections may be due to COVID-19, influenza, RSV or other viral pathogens. Unless you are at higher risk for complications, you do not need anti-viral treatment and should focus on symptomatic relief. Caring for your body helps your immune system care for you.  Make sure you’re getting the sleep you need, drinking plenty of fluids and eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables.

Self Care

  • Increase liquids (water, tea with honey, soup, popsicles)

  • Gargle with warm salt water (1/4-1/2 tsp salt mixed with 1 cup of warm water)
  • Throat lozenges
  • Steam inhalation/hot showers
  • Nasal saline irrigation/sinus rinse - look for brands such as simply saline, Neil med, ocean or generic version. Want salt water mixture only.
  • Avoid smoking

Over-the-Counter (OTC) Medications 

  • For fever or pain
    • Acetaminophen (Tylenol, Panadolol, Paracetamol, Crocin)

    • 325mg or 500mg, 1-2 tablets every 4-6 hours as needed. Do not exceed daily dose recommended on package.

    • Ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil, Nuprin)
    • 200mg, 2-3 tablets every 6-8 hours as needed. Take with food.
    • Naproxen (Aleve)
    • 220mg, 1-2 tablets every 12 hours as needed. Take with food.
  • For nasal congestion, stuffy/runny nose
    • Pseudoephedrine (Sudafed not Sudafed PE) per package directions as needed. Ask at pharmacy counter for medicine, will need to show ID

    • Pseudoephedrine/Guaifenesin (Mucinex D) per package directions as needed. Ask at pharmacy counter for medicine, will need to show ID
  • For Cough
    ​​​​​​​OTC medicines for cough may not be very effective.
    • Can try combination of honey/lemon juice/warm water - drink like a tea, pineapple juice can also help suppress a cough

    • Delsym can help some people

Prevention of spread

  • Wear your mask when around others, especially indoors

  • Wash hands often using soap and water or use alcohol based hand sanitizer

  • Avoid touching eyes, nose, mouth. Wash hands if you do.
  • Cough/sneeze into your elbow or sleeve or cover cough with tissue and discard after use, wash hands.
  • Blow nose into tissue and discard, wash hands.
  • Avoid close contact with others

RIT follows CDC guidance. If you feel ill, wear a mask and avoid being around other people until you have been fever free and improving symptoms for at least 24 hours. When you do return to your usual activities, wear a mask for an additional 5 days to protect those around you. This guidance applies to all respiratory viruses.

Most people do not need to get tested for COVID-19 if they are ill. Simply follow the guidance for symptomatic support and masking for any viral illness until improving (see FAQ above). However, if you have any medical conditions that weakens your immune system, there are treatments available and so testing might be appropriate for you.

Some common conditions that suggest you should get tested and if positive consider treatment include: cancer, asthma, diabetes, cerebral palsy, heart disease, auto-immune disorders, obesity, pregnancy, sickle cell disease and smoking.

Students who are ill can contact a nurse through Patient Chat and discuss whether to get tested in the Student Health Center.

The CDC recommends that individuals experiencing symptoms of a respiratory illness (including COVID-19) stay home and away from others until it has been at least 24 hours fever free without the use of fever reducing medication AND with improving symptoms. Check with your employer regarding any COVID-19 specific policies or pay they may have (for RIT employees).

Students who are at risk for more severe illness should contact the Student Health Center or their private physician for consideration of anti-viral treatment. Telephone, secure messaging, or Patient Chat are contact options for the RIT Student Health Center.

COVID-19 tests are available for purchase at the Student Health Center, Corner Store and Global Market on campus. Off-campus, COVID-19 tests are available at pharmacies including Wegmans, reachable by RIT Shuttle F. You may also check with your insurance company if they provide reimbursement for test purchases.

If your roommate, friend, or close contact is ill, you should:

  • Reduce the time you spend in close contact with them.

  • Wear a high quality mask (e.g. KN95, 94) if you are in the same space together.
  • Monitor yourself for illness and take appropriate action if you start feeling sick (see FAQ above).
  • Help them by bringing food and calling/texting to check in on them.

Though RIT does not require COVID-19 or influenza vaccination, we strongly recommend students get vaccinated yearly.

Though not required, RIT does encourage masking if you are sick, if you are immune compromised, or if you want to. Recognizing that some members of our community or their loved ones are more susceptible to severe illness, we strongly urge everyone to stay up to date with immunizations, boosters, and masks when appropriate or asked.

High quality KN95/KN94 may be purchased through Amazon and other mail-order vendors. Local pharmacies also stock masks available for purchase.