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Students with Chronic Illnesses

MeKimberMeKimber Registered User Posts: 70 Junior Member
Has anyone else been in this situation? My son has Crohn's disease, a chronic disease of the intestines and colon. It is very well managed and for the most part in remission. He does take meds every day but other than that you would never know he had this problem. From what I have heard from other parents of non USC students they contacted the office of disabilities to make them aware. in the event that the student had to miss class for any length of time they would not be penalized. My son orginally did not want me to contact the disability office, he doesn't want to draw attention to himself. But I am concerned that in the event he must miss some classes or assignments due to medical issues that he can't control, he could be penalized if the school wasn't made aware through the disabilities office. What do you think?
Post edited by MeKimber on

Replies to: Students with Chronic Illnesses

  • greenvillegreenville Registered User Posts: 300 Junior Member
    My son had a 504 in high school due to some chronic GI problems, and he also had an IEP. Like you, we thought there might be an occasional time when he might miss class due to the GI issue. We did contact the disability office, and they were extremely helpful, as well as handling everything in a professional and confidential manner. You do want to go ahead and contact them right away this summer, because there is paperwork that needs to be filled out - we had to get a copy of his 504 and IEP plans, a doctor's statement, etc, if I remember correctly. Be sure and have your doctor note if there are any special housing considerations/accommodations that need to be made. (I believe there is also a separate orientation for disability students, but I believe my son attended the non-disability orientation...I can't remember for sure. There are some registration differences for some disability students after the first semester.) I did go over and meet the staff in the disability office and they are extremely supportive. The services in college are a bit different than in high school, but they can advise you on what they can offer for your student and what the student needs to do. Your son will not have attention called to him in any way.
    Here is the link for the main page:
    USC: STUDENT DISABILITY SERVICES
    Down near the bottom of the page, you will see a red "Accommodations Link", which takes you to a page listing what services are offered for various disabilities.
    Also, your son may want to make an appt . with the student health center during some free time during welcome week once he gets on campus. That way, the health center can start a chart file on him and they will have his information. (They do not start a file prior to a student's first appointment.) My son had a copy of his records from his GI doctor and he took that with him to the health center for it to be on file.
    I don't know whether you might have concerns about food ingredients (that was something we had to check into), but a call to the dining service manager put my mind at ease. They said that if a student had food allergies, they can call the cafeteria manager ahead and find out, or ask when going through the line and they can tell you what is in every dish. I think there is ingredient info posted online now, also.
    I have been extremely pleased with the help from both the disability office and the health center. They have both been very supportive to my son.
  • greenvillegreenville Registered User Posts: 300 Junior Member
    MeKimber,
    On the USC: Student Disability Services page, on the left hand side, there is a red box with links. The fourth link down, "Incoming Students Wanting To Register with OSDS" will take you to another page with all sorts of info on how to start the registration process, parents FAQs, videos, etc. They advise that the process can take several weeks.
  • greenvillegreenville Registered User Posts: 300 Junior Member
    MeKimber,
    I hate to keep posting, but I wanted to correct something that I wrote earlier. It's been 2 years since my son signed up with the disability office - so some of the things are a bit fuzzy in my memory, but I think maybe he used his IEP and 504 for reference only. I know for certain we had to get his GI doctor to fill out some information, and we had to have learning disability testing done the summer before college so all the information would be recent.
  • MeKimberMeKimber Registered User Posts: 70 Junior Member
    I appreciate the information and will make contact with them tomorrow. Like your S, I would like them to have the info for reference purposes only at this point. He never let this illness get in the way academically in high school, but I figure college is a whole different thing and the instructors may not be so understanding.
This discussion has been closed.