EMERGENCY CONTACT PROGRAM
What is an Emergency Contact Program (ECP)?
An ECP provides an Emergency Contact as a temporary adult authority for boarding school students in the event a student experiences a medical or mental health emergency, criminal justice involvement, suspension/expulsion, or any other situation that requires a student to access services off campus that fall outside the responsibility of the student’s school. The annual Enrollment Fee provides access to Emergency Contact services in the event they are needed, acting as assurance for parents and schools during an emergency situation in which parents/guardians are not immediately available. SHA does not obtain legal guardianship as the Emergency Contact unless pre-arranged with parents.
Why does my student need an Emergency Contact?
In the last several years, boarding schools have begun to narrow their responsibilities for students in need of off-campus services, such as transportation, hospitalization, and emergency housing. To remain enrolled in school, students are now required to have an Emergency Contact on file who can act quickly on parents’ behalf. Additionally, during this public health emergency surrounding COVID-19, an Emergency Contact can organize medical quarantine for COVID-19 exposure or provide transportation and housing if faced with a campus closure.
What constitutes an emergency for which my student might need Student Health Advocates’ services as my student’s Emergency Contact?
Any event that requires a student to quickly access off-campus services for which a parent would typically be responsible would activate SHA’s role as Emergency Contact as directed by the school and/or parents. Examples of emergency situations might include campus closures; medical or mental health emergencies, including medical quarantine for COVID-19 exposure/infection; criminal justice involvement; and school suspension/expulsion. SHA’s temporary authority ends once students have returned to campus or traveled elsewhere with parental consent.
What do you mean by off-campus or additional services? How are they charged, and how much do they cost?
The Enrollment Fee provides access to services in the event they are needed to address emergency situations while students are away from home. Any services provided when SHA’s role as Emergency Contact is activated incurs a separate cost as services are provided. Examples of additional services that would be billed separately include:
Please note that the above list is not exhaustive. Whenever possible depending on the urgency of the situation, SHA will provide quotes for services before charging the credit card on file. Depending on the nature of the service, the service may be billed hourly or at a flat fee.
What happens if my student tests positive for COVID-19 while on campus?
As long as your student is fully enrolled in our ECP, SHA will provide emergency medical quarantine services at a professionally-vetted hotel approved for medical quarantines. Please see our website for information about the medical quarantine process.
Can SHA help my student get a COVID-19 test or other off-campus medical services?
Yes. If your student requires a COVID-19 test that is not offered by your student’s school, SHA can help arrange for off-campus testing that meets your testing requirements, e.g., test type and results turnaround time, whenever possible. SHA cannot guarantee, however, that all testing requirements can be met in a particular geography. SHA works with a number of testing facilities, but if a current testing partner does not meet your requirements, you will need to specify which facility you would like your student transported to based on your school and home country’s requirements. If the student's school is able to arrange testing that meets the school's requirements, SHA recommends that parents arrange testing directly with the school to ensure compliance. SHA will arrange any other medical services needed (whether or not COVID-related) off campus for which the school is not responsible, such as off campus doctor’s visits.
What happens if my student’s boarding school suspends room and board?
In the event a school suspends room and board, SHA will work with students’ families to house and transport students as needed to a hotel, airport, or elsewhere while parents determine the next course of action. SHA has previously worked with students whose schools have suspended room and board but have continued to offer on-campus instruction for day students. In such circumstances, a longer term off-campus housing arrangement can be arranged so that the student can continue to attend classes on campus.
What is the difference between Standard and Expedited Enrollment in the Emergency Contact Program?
The Standard Enrollment with a fee of $2,000 provides access to Emergency Contact services when they are needed upon the date of enrollment (the date payment is received) through the end of the student’s 2020-2021 academic year. When a student enrolls in the Emergency Contact Program at the time services are needed, i.e., at the time of an emergency, the fee is $3,000. Please note that depending on demand there is no guarantee Expedited Enrollment will be available when services are needed. To ensure coverage and immediate access to services, SHA strongly recommends families choose Standard Enrollment.
Can I enroll when I need the service, e.g., my student becomes ill?
Yes, but SHA strongly advises against waiting for an emergency to enroll in our Emergency Contact Program as services cannot be guaranteed at that time. Please see the above question.
How long does the Emergency Contact Program cover my student in the event of an emergency?
Enrollment in the Emergency Contact Program runs from the date of enrollment (the date payment is received) to the end of the student’s academic year.
Do you offer ECP services for summer terms?
Please contact SHA if you are interested in ECP for a summer term only. SHA enrollment ends at the end of the academic year, typically May or June. Re-enrollment is required for the following academic year.
How do I enroll in your Emergency Contact Program?
To enroll in SHA’s Emergency Contact Program, visit https://studenthealthadvocates.com/enroll.
Can I disenroll from the Emergency Contact Program?
You may disenroll your child at any time; however, SHA does not issue refunds for the Enrollment Fee for domestic students. For international students, the ECP is refundable in the event new travel restrictions prohibit entry into the United States or in the event the student's school suspends room and board before the student has departed his/her home country. Please see the complete refund policy on our Enroll page or at the bottom of this page.
Will you tell my student’s school that SHA is my student’s Emergency Contact?
SHA is happy to communicate with your student’s school about your student’s enrollment, although we recommend you also communicate this information to your school administration directly. SHA will provide a Proof of Enrollment certificate if your school requires documentation directly from SHA.
PRE-CAMPUS ARRIVAL QUARANTINE
What is a Pre-Campus Arrival Quarantine, and how much does it cost?
Schools and their state/local governments may require international and domestic out-of-state students to undergo a quarantine process before arriving on campus. SHA’s pre-campus arrival Quarantine service can be tailored to the requirements needed to satisfy local policy requirements, including length of stay and COVID-19 testing. Students enrolled in this Quarantine service will be picked up at the airport or other transit facility and transported to the quarantine hotel where they will be supervised 24/7 by an onsite chaperone. Students will have access to three meals a day via a contactless food delivery service. Quarantine services are quoted individually to reflect length of stay, hotel, transportation, and other services that might be required for a specific student. To date, Quarantine services have ranged from approximately $3,5000 to $5,000.
What is the difference between a medical quarantine and Pre-Campus Arrival Quarantine?
When a student tests positive for COVID-19 while on campus, the student may be required to leave campus to undergo “medical quarantine” before returning to campus or leaving the state to travel elsewhere. See our website to learn more about the medical quarantine process. Please see the previous question for details about Pre-Campus Arrival Quarantine.
How do I know if my student requires Pre-Campus Arrival Quarantine?
Contact your school administration to request information about your school and state/local government’s quarantine policies for out-of-state travelers.
Does my student have to enroll in the Emergency Contact Program to undergo Pre-Campus Arrival Quarantine?
Yes. All students accessing any kind of SHA services, including Pre-Campus Arrival Quarantine, must be enrolled in the Emergency Contact Program.
What hotels do you use for quarantine? Can my student stay in a different hotel?
SHA works with a network of 3-star+ hotels that are vetted for quarantine capabilities, including appropriate sanitation, distancing, proximity to COVID-19 testing sites, and reduced capacity. SHA cannot ensure that safety standards are met at hotels that we do not work with; thus, SHA prefers that students stay at our current hotel partners. If you strongly prefer your student stay at a specific hotel, SHA is willing to learn more about your needs and assess our ability to offer our services at other hotels, though we cannot make any guarantees.
Who provides supervision if my student stays in a hotel?
SHA works with licensed home health care agencies to provide 24/7 onsite chaperones who stay with students in separate rooms and supervise their activity and assess for safety. Chaperones undergo extensive background checks, including criminal justice involvement and substance use. Chaperones are trained in CPR and mental health first aid. Chaperones are often certified nursing assistants (CNAs) and are supported around-the-clock by their agencies’ supervisors.
Are homestay quarantines available?
Homestay quarantines are unavailable at this time due to COVID-19 concerns. We hope to offer homestays as soon as possible.
Which boarding schools do you work with?
SHA currently works with a variety of private schools across the Mid-Atlantic and New England region, with more joining every month. Our enrolled students come from 5 continents. SHA works closely with schools to ensure we are providing services for their students who require local support during an event that requires them to leave the school for any reason.
Do you communicate with students’ schools?
In most cases, parent(s) directly enroll their students in SHA’s Emergency Contact and other programs. While SHA may communicate with schools to coordinate arrangements for students, SHA does not act as an official liaison between parents and schools unless needed in an emergency situation. For routine questions about school policies and other school matters, parents may obtain such information directly from school administrators to ensure the information they receive is current.
Is financial aid available?
At this time, SHA is not able to provide financial support or waivers for our Enrollment Fee; however, some schools have expressed interest in subsidizing SHA Enrollment Fees for their students. Ask your school administrators if they might be able to provide financial support for SHA enrollment. SHA currently partners with a nonprofit organization that provides scholarships to international students studying at US boarding schools and subsidizes SHA’s enrollment fees as part of the students’ scholarship award.
Is SHA a form of medical or health insurance?
SHA is not an insurance company and does not provide health insurance coverage. Most boarding schools provide health insurance to cover the cost of medical services, such as doctor’s visits and treatment in urgent care facilities off campus. As a student’s Emergency Contact, SHA will provide transportation and supervision if a student needs to access routine medical services off campus. In the event of an emergency that requires an Emergency Department visit or hospitalization, the student will likely be transported by ambulance. In this situation, SHA can provide supervision until a parent or other guardian is present.
Are your services available to international students?
Yes. SHA works with students from the US and abroad who are attending boarding school in the US. SHA does not work with students attending boarding schools outside the United States.
Will SHA staff accompany my child on a domestic or international flight?
No. SHA is unable to accompany students on flights.
Do you have information about your services available in other languages?
At the moment, our enrollment documents are available in English only. Please contact us if we can assist you with the enrollment process. Our website can be translated into other languages using online tools, such as Google Translate and Bing Translator. (Enter https://studenthealthadvocates.com in the left box, select language, and click on the URL in the right box to go to the translated site.) Here are links to a few translated versions of our website:
How long have you been in business?
SHA’s founders began building the company in 2018 by researching schools and families’ needs and recognizing that schools and families struggle to address student emergency needs. SHA expected to launch in fall 2021. Instead, the company began operations in June 2020 as the urgency for emergency contact services accelerated amid the global pandemic and as schools increasingly began to require or urge families to engage an emergency contact firm like SHA.
What payments methods are available?
SHA currently requires that the $2,000 enrollment fee be paid by bank wire transfer or check. All other costs, such as housing and transportation, can be paid via credit card. Please contact us to discuss payment arrangements.
What are your refund and cancellation policies?
We are confident that you will be completely satisfied with Student Health Advocates' services. In the event that your needs are not met, please contact us so we can address your concerns. The fee for the Emergency Contact Program (ECP) is nonrefundable for domestic students. For international students, the ECP is refundable (less a $100 processing fee) under two circumstances that might occur after the student has enrolled: 1) new US State Dept. travel restrictions prohibit the student's entry into the United States, and/or 2) the student's school suspends room and board before the student has departed his/her home country. Refunds for international students will not be issued if a student voluntarily elects not to travel to the US even though the US State Dept. has not restricted travel from the student’s departing country. If only the student's home country restricts travel to the US, i.e., the US has not implemented inbound restrictions, the ECP is not refundable. Payments for any booked services, such as transportation and hotel rooms, are refundable up to 30 days after payment is made as long as the service has not been used. SHA will refund 100% of the payment less $100 for services canceled more than 48 hours before the scheduled start time of the service, e.g., pick up time for transportation to the airport. Refunds will not be provided for paid services that are canceled within 48 hours of the scheduled start time. Refunds for booked services that the student has partially utilized will be refunded on a prorated basis less a $100 processing fee. Refunds will be issued within 15 days of receiving the request.
Who should I contact if I have additional questions or concerns?
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