A Guide to Reproductive Health Care Services at Universities in Mississippi

The U.S. Supreme Court’s expected decision to overturn Roe v. Wade this summer will impact a wide range of Mississippians, especially college students, who have a high need for reproductive health care.

Women in their twenties make up the majority of Mississippi residents who get abortions in the state, according to data from the Mississippi Department of Health and the Guttmacher Institute. While it’s unclear how often students in Mississippi seek abortions, studies have found that the top reasons students stop attending school are pregnancy, the need to care for family and lack of access to childcare services.

That’s why advocates and public health experts say colleges and universities should provide students with holistic and inclusive reproductive health care — and, if Roe is banned, that access will become all the more important.

Mississippi Today investigated the reproductive health care services and sex education resources offered at the state’s eight public universities by calling student health centers and requesting information from media relations. In general, the three largest universities in Mississippi—University of Mississippi, Mississippi State University, and University of Southern Mississippi—offer more reproductive health services on campus than smaller schools, which usually refer students to nearby clinics for exams.

All eight universities offer free condoms, but only one school, Jackson State University, offers students regular access to free Plan B emergency contraception by appointment.

This list will be updated.

Alcorn State University Rowan Hall Health Services Center

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Lorman Campus: 601-877-6460

The center does not have an on-campus OB-GYN, but does offer testing and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases.

Condoms, offered free of charge, are the only type of contraception available at the centre.

Once a student has received a first dose of Depo-Provera, a form of birth control given by injection, the center can administer the second dose if the student brings it to the center.

The center does not offer emergency contraceptives like Plan B, but will advise students to look for over-the-counter options available at Walmart in Vicksburg.

Free pregnancy tests are available to students.

The Child Development and Learning Center is available to Alcorn State employees. Fees are assessed on the basis of income. Alcorn State University did not respond to questions from Mississippi Today whether it offers on-campus child care for students.

Delta State University OW Reily Student Health Services

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The nurse practitioner provides basic services like cough medicine scripts, but does not provide lab tests or blood work.

The center will recommend that students wishing to obtain a Pap smear go to the local health department.

The center does not offer emergency contraceptives like Plan B.

Condoms are offered free of charge in the centre’s resource room.

The center has partnered with a mobile clinic to offer testing for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).

Delta State has held sexual wellness seminars.

The Hamilton-White Child Development Center is available for students with children up to age five. Tuition costs $5,928 and can be paid in 10 and 12 month installments.

Jackson State University Student Health Center

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The center offers a variety of birth control options, including pills and the Depo-Provera vaccine, free to students.

Students can obtain the center’s Plan B for free by making an appointment with a nurse practitioner.

Offers free STD testing and treatment, including HIV testing.

Pregnancy tests are available to students without an appointment.

Provides referrals for students seeking prenatal care at local OB-GYN clinics if they do not have access to their own private physicians.

The Lottie W. Thornton Early Child Care Center is available for students, teachers, and community members with children ages 3-5. Tuition is $375 per month.

Mississippi State University’s longest student health center

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The center offers free sexual health exams for students.

Free condoms are available in the dorms and various forms of free contraception are offered at the centre.

Free pregnancy tests are available at the health center.

The pharmacy offers Plan B over the counter for about $30.

The Department of Health and Welfare Promotion offers free STD testing, including free HIV testing.

Tuition for the Child Development and Family Studies Center, which MSU calls “an experiential child study laboratory,” is $585 per month and is available for infants and children up to age five.

University of Mississippi Campus Health Center for Women

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Nurse practitioners do not provide gynecological or urological exams, but they can write prescriptions for birth control.

Nurse practitioners can prescribe Plan B, but rarely do, according to the health center.

Free condoms are available at the center.

The center does not provide services to pregnant women or children under the age of three.

The center offers pregnancy tests for $10.

The development center for children and parents is accessible to children over the age of one until they enter kindergarten. The center costs about $6,240 for the school year, but MUW students get a 10% discount.

Delta Health Center at Mississippi Valley State University

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The nurse practitioner can do pap smears, but will refer students seeking more in-depth care to an OB-GYN in Mound Bayou.

The center can write a prescription for birth control, which students will need to pick up at Walmart or a nearby pharmacy.

If a student brings Depo-Provera, the center can administer it.

The center does not offer Plan B, but emergency contraception is sometimes available for free at health fairs on campus.

Condoms are offered free of charge.

Free pregnancy tests are provided.

The Child Development Center, operated by Delta Health Alliance, is available to students, teachers, and community members with children between the ages of 2 and 5. The center is free depending on income.

University of Mississippi Academic Health Services

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662-915-7274 (students)

662-915-6550 (employees)

Students can access annual exams, including pap smears and breast exams, but health departments cannot implant IUDs.

The center can write prescriptions for birth control, but it’s not free.

The center offers urine pregnancy tests for $38 and blood pregnancy tests for $40.

The pharmacy sells plan B for around $30.

The Willie Price Lab School is available for children ages 3-5 from “college-affiliated families”.

University of Southern Mississippi Moffitt Health Center

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The Office of Health Promotion offers free training in sex education for instructors who request it.

The health center offers free, walk-in HIV testing. Other forms of STD testing are not offered free of charge but at a discounted rate which may be billed to insurance.

Free condoms are available in the pharmacy lobby and in patient rooms at the health center

The Child Development Center is offered to children from 8 weeks to 5 years old. Students with children can apply for college financial aid through an award from the United States Department of Education called the “Child Care Access Means Parents In School” grant.

— Article credit to Molly Minta of Mississippi Today —

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