Travis Hensley" />
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Thursday, October 5, 2023


Universities responsible for better future

On Friday, Gov. Rick Perry vetoed a bill passed by both the House and Senate. HB 103 deals with the operation of student health centers in institutions of higher education. It was meant to amend the law and increase the efficiency of universities’ health care centers.

If Perry did not veto the bill, it would have required a university with an enrollment of more than 20,000, such as UH, to take on the responsibility of accepting and processing private health insurance at the university’s health center.

In addition, the bill would have forced colleges to enter into contracts with at least three of the largest insurance companies in the area. One ‘high-deductible’ plan would have required sick people to pay more money before receiving the coverage’s benefits.

The advantages of this bill would have gone to the estimated 70 percent of college students who already have health insurance. This would have most likely enabled these students, who were once required to go elsewhere for basic care, to go to the health center. In turn, this would help universities collect revenue.

Even though the bill was vetoed, it does raise an interesting question: Who is ultimately responsible for the well-being of students? Is it the university’s responsibility or the individual student?

While both the university and government should be responsible for making sure health care is available to students, UH’s responsibility to its students transcends the state. The same is true for all other institutions of higher education in Texas. College has presented itself as more than just a place to get a degree.

College is seen as the promise of a better future and entails more than just a better education. Advantages provided by universities, such as their health care centers, should more than meet state regulations. A higher standard should be a main responsibility of each university.

With health care made available, the ultimate responsibility should be left in the hands of the student. It is the students’ responsibility to ensure they have adequate health care, because health is the most important thing, even more vital than graduation.

Travis Hensley is a philosophy senior and may be reached at [email protected]

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