Medical Leave of Absence and Re-Entry Policy

Policy Number: #200

Responsible Executive(s):

  • Provost

Responsible Office(s):

  • Office of Records and Registration, Dean of Students, College Deans

Date Adopted: 08-18-2020

  • A. Purpose

Regis University (Regis) acknowledges that a student may experience physical or mental health issues that significantly limit their ability to function successfully or safely as students for a period of time. A student may also need to take time to assist a family member with a physical or mental condition or in the event of a family member’s death. In these circumstances, the student may elect to apply for a Medical Leave of Absence (Medical LOA). A Medical LOA is to be used when a student must withdraw from all classes during a given term. The Medical LOA allows students to take the time necessary for them and/or their family member to seek treatment or other care necessary and required for physical or mental health with the goal of allowing for the possibility of the student returning to studies at Regis in the future.

  • B. Scope

All Regis students should read and be familiar with this policy.

  • C. Definitions

Family Member is defined as the student’s parent including the biological, adoptive, step, or foster parent of a student or an individual who stood in loco parentis to the student when the student was a minor; legal spouse (including same-sex spouse if legally married), common law spouse, domestic partner (DP), or civil union partner (CUP); a student’s children to age 26, regardless of marital, or tax dependent status (including a stepchild, legally-adopted child, a child placed with the student for adoption, or a child for whom the student is the legal guardian); or a student’s dependent children of any age who are physically or mentally unable to care for themselves.

  • D. The Policy

Eligibility:

Students requesting a Medical LOA must complete the application for Medical LOA and provide adequate medical documentation from the student or family member's treating physician, licensed mental health provider, or other licensed healthcare provider for the physical health or mental health condition indicated on the application. In the case of a family member’s death, the student must supply a death certificate and evidence that the student is family. Regis may approve the Medical LOA if these documents, combined, demonstrate that the student or their family member's mental or physical condition warrants the student’s complete withdrawal from academic study for a period of time.

To obtain a Medical LOA, students must submit a completed Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) compliant consent form to their treating physician, licensed mental health provider or other licensed healthcare provider’s office to authorize their healthcare provider to submit the required medical documentation to the University. The healthcare provider must include in the documentation all elements outlined in the Medical LOA Application.

In connection with the Medical LOA, the student may also be required to submit a limited FERPA release permitting Regis to exchange information with the student’s treating physician, licensed mental health provider or other licensed healthcare provider to address the student’s ability to perform as a student for the period covering the Medical LOA, the duration of the approved Medical LOA, and the Medical Re-entry process.

Notification:

A student whom has officially withdrawn from all of their classes during the current term may submit an application for a Medical LOA and supporting documentation any time prior to the end of the semester in which the student is enrolled. A student who has stopped attending classes but cannot withdraw because it is past the withdraw deadline may also submit an application for a Medical LOA any time prior to the end of the semester. A student receiving an approved Medical LOA may also be considered for a Registration Status Update and Tuition Appeal to have their circumstances reviewed for removal of “W”s or “F”s from their transcript and/or be granted a credit of tuition paid.

For students requesting a Medical LOA who receive financial aid through federal, state, or institutional funding programs, the policies and procedures regarding those programs will govern, regardless of the Medical LOA being approved. Students should reach out to the Office of Financial Aid for information on the impact of either withdrawing from current courses and/or pursing a Medical LOA as there may be resulting charges or payments required.

A student supplies notification under this section by submitting the Medical LOA Application, articulating the reason for the request, to the Office of Records and Registration who will forward to the appropriate Dean, or designee.

All students are strongly encouraged to discuss their leave request with the applicable dean in advance of submitting the Medical LOA Application so the dean can assist the student in identifying all the possible options for the student.

Re-entry after Approved Medical LOA:

In some cases, prior to a student’s return after a Medical LOA, the University may request adequate medical documentation from the student's treating health care provider that the student is prepared to perform successfully academically and meet the essential eligibility requirements of the program, with or without a reasonable accommodation. This documentation is waived for pregnancy leave.

The documentation will vary depending on the underlying reason for the medical leave, but may include a treatment summary including the following information:

  1. The treating health care provider's ("HCP") professional qualification and licensure.
  2. The HCP’s professional opinion regarding the student's ability to successfully perform the requested course load or clinical practice at Regis with or without continued treatment.
  3. Any recommended reasonable accommodations.

When a student’s serious mental health condition was the reason for a Medical LOA, the University may ask that the HCP and/ or the student communicate directly with a mental health provider of the University’s choosing regarding:

  1. The student’s safety risk;
  2. The student’s progress in managing the issue;
  3. The ongoing treatment plan, if any.