Wilson Launches New 24/7 Telehealth Service

In an unexpected move, Warren Wilson College has teamed up with TimelyMD to create Wilson Telehealth. Wilson Telehealth is a 24/7 telehealth hub for students and staff alike, no matter the location. Here students have access to both mental and physical health services with no payment required at the time of the appointment. In order to access services, students can make an account with their Warren Wilson emails by visiting the Wilson telehealth website or on the TimelyMD app and start receiving care immediately.

“We’ve always been looking at ways to provide more access to health and counseling services to our students,” said Paul Perrine, Vice President for Student Life at Warren Wilson College. 

Starting late last year, Perrine began looking into expanding medical services on campus. This search ended with a deep look into TimelyMD during the fall semester of 2020. When asked why TimelyMD was chosen as the provider for the school, Perrine noted that it was a priority to find a provider that demonstrated diversity. 

“While looking at places, it was really important for us that there are providers of color,” said Perrine. “Across their whole system, about 40% of their providers are providers of color, from counselors to doctors to the other folks you see on there. So that was important to us, in terms of providing access to people.”

In order to pay for this service, Warren Wilson College will be instituting a health fee that students will be able to find on their bill breakdown starting the fall semester of 2021. This fee covers the TimelyMD partnership as well as other health related costs, including costs related to the pandemic. 

Students may be wondering how the introduction of Wilson Telehealth could affect them with changes to care both on and off campus. Perrine makes clear the telehealth services aren’t meant to undermine the services on campus, but to add accessibility to them with the all day, every day nature of Wilson Telehealth.

“In terms of what they provide versus what our folks provide, there’s really a lot of overlap, and that’s great,” he said. “Our health center is well-utilized, our counseling center is well-utilized, so to provide more access and more hours there is great.”

According to Perrine, the addition of TimelyMD is about options. Students can make the choice to visit the services and providers on Warren Wilson campus or branch out virtually; whichever they feel is right for them. The specific services offered by TimelyMD include immediate medical or emotional support, scheduled appointments with a counselor and scheduled appointments with a health coach.

Art Schuster, the director of the counseling center, has also commented on a unique way these services will benefit Warren Wilson students. With roughly one half of students living somewhere other than North Carolina, counseling services can be challenging and many students are left without the help they need due to licensing laws in the state. 

“Warren Wilson counselors can only work with people who are in North Carolina because of the state laws,” said Schuster. “Those rules were relaxed in the spring when COVID first hit but they’re no longer relaxed. It was a lot more convenient when we didn’t have to worry about where a student was.” 

As far as the outlook of the partnership, it’s not just something here for the pandemic. As said by Perrine, this service is something the school plans to keep for the foreseeable future. 

“It’s our way of really trying to look out for our students,” said Perrine. “And help give them access to the care that we all should have.”