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Department of Student Health records

Identifier: RG-17-6

Scope and Contents

This collection holds permanent institutional records created by the faculty and staff of the University of Virginia Department of Student Health or by other individuals related to the operations of Student Health. Materials include annual reports, correspondence and subject files of the Director of Student Health, planning documents and reports, historical policies and procedures, department histories, committee records and meeting minutes, photographs, and marketing materials.


  • Creation: 1939-Present

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Conditions Governing Access

All materials in this collection are available for public access unless otherwise noted. Restrictions on access are made in accordance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), the Virginia Freedom of Information Act, and any related policies or regulations.

Conditions Governing Use

The University of Virginia owns the copyright to most of the materials in this collection that have not yet entered the public domain. You are free to use collection materials in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).

Biographical / Historical

During the early days of the University of Virginia, there were no hospital facilities for ill students, who were typically attended in their rooms by a medical faculty member or local physician. In 1857, the Board of Visitors allocated funding for the construction of a student infirmary, which, once completed, would become one of the first academic student health centers in the country. The Infirmary was located just east of the south end of the Lawn. The structure still exisits and is known today as "Varsity Hall." Responsibility for the care of sick students lay with the medical faculty and the Infirmary was used for both outpatient and inpatient student health services until the opening of the University Hospital, which then became the location of inpatient care.

By the 1930s, due to growing University enrollment, the medical faculty realized a more formal system of student health care was needed. After a successful appeal to the President of the University, a Committee on Student Health was appointed. On this Committee's recommendation, the Department of Student Health was created in 1938 under its first director, Dr. Andrew D. Hart, Jr. Student Health was located in the Entrance Building (now known as the Corner Building, which currently houses the University's Women's Center).

As UVA continued to grow during the mid-20th century, so too did the Department of Student Health. Additional staff were hired to meet the demands of rising student enrollment and increasing numbers of clinic visits. After UVA became fully coeducational in 1970, gynecology services began to be offered to meet the needs of the new group of female students. During the 1980s, the mission of Student Health expanded to include health education programs and peer educator initiatives.

By this time the physical facilities of the Department of Student Health were proving inadequate, and planning began for the construction of a new building. In 1989, the Elson Student Health Center was completed on Brandon Ave, where the Department has been located for over three decades. A new UVA Student Health and Wellness Center is scheduled to be completed in 2021.


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Records are generally organized according to the Records Retention and Disposition Schedules Series maintained by the Library of Virginia (LVA). When necessary, additional subdivisions have been created for materials that do not have clear equivalents in the LVA resources. When possible, the original organization of materials was taken into consideration--see series-level Arrangement notes for more information.

Custodial History

Records transferred by Caroline Walters from UVA Records Management to the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library on 30 April 2018.


Records of the Department of Student Health may be classified elsewhere as RG-18. Within University administrative organization, the Department of Student Health is currently located under the Division of Student Affairs, rather than under the Health System (RG-17). However, historically, the Department of Student Health has had a close relationship with the School of Medicine and the Medical Center and the Director of Student Health is classified as a faculty member in the School of Medicine. For these reasons, it was decided that the Department of Student Health records would reside at the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library rather than at the Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library and the classification RG-17-6 was created to house these records.

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Repository Details

Part of the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library Repository

Claude Moore Health Sciences Library
1300 Jefferson Park Avenue
P.O. Box 800722
Charlottesville Virginia 22908-0722 United States