Columbia Health Annual Report

Academic Year 2020-2021: Progressing on our core mission to advance the well-being of the University community and the personal and academic success of students.

Last reviewed: 12/22/2022

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While the global pandemic forced the entire world to pause, there was no pause for Columbia Health. Our doors—virtual and in-person—remained open throughout, even as protocols and procedures constantly changed. We had to expand the scope of our services to include faculty and staff, and provide support for many other aspects of the University’sCOVID-19 response.

This annual report tells the story of Columbia Health this past academic year: how we have contributed to the COVID-19 response, how we adapted our services and processes to meet evolving conditions and student need, how we worked with partners at all levels of the community, how we delivered student-centered care with inclusiveness at its heart, how we used data and research to drive quality and innovation, and what our position as a standalone department at the University means.


  • Medical Services completed 22,408 visits with 18,031 unique students.
  • Administered 12,048 flu vaccines and 6,089 other vaccines.
  • Counseling and Psychological Services saw 5,148 students for individual counseling, provided 1,723 consultations for faculty, administrators, parents, and other members of the community concerned about a student, and offered 111 virtual support spaces.
  • 3,274 students registered with Disability Services, 10.4% of the Columbia student community.
  • Disability Services facilitated 30,851 accommodations, a 9.95% increase from the previous year. The team also provided captioning, sign-language, and CART services for 1,017 courses and virtually proctored or administered online accommodations for 14,451 quizzes and exams.
  • Alice! Health Promotion hosted 143 health promotion events for 5,384 attendees. The team also trained 9 students (representing 6 schools on the Morningside campus) for the Columbia Health Peer Ambassador Network.
  • Sexual Violence Response hosted 250 violence-prevention education workshops for 14,588 participants.
  • 13,369 students and 605 dependents were enrolled in the Columbia University Student Health Insurance Plan during the Fall 2020 term. 12,654 students and 653 dependents were enrolled during the Spring 2021 term.
  • Columbia Health negotiated a smaller premium increase for the health insurance plan: 7% compared to 12-20% across the industry in 2020.
  • Columbia Health trained 768 community members in naloxone administration. 5 lives were saved during the academic year.


  • Administered 4,442 COVID-19 vaccines.
  • Completed 300,000+ COVID-19 tests for the community.
  • Answered 2,910 COVID-19 hotline calls (Aug. 2020 - Mar. 2021).
  • Provided support for 2,800+ affiliates through contract tracing efforts.
  • Trained 400 Keeping Our Community Healthy Ambassadors.
  • Provided support for students in quarantine and isolation:
    • Self-care kits
    • Peace & Presence workshops, including Trauma-focused and Restorative Yoga; Movement Medicine; Voice Journey; Drawing & Language; and Visual Arts 
    • Chat4Connection virtual support spaces 
    • R.O.A.R. Success Drop-in Coaching (Alice! Health Promotion)
    • Take a breath with Alice!
    • Take a (virtual) break with Alice!... and some dogs
    • Virtual acupressure and integrative medicine support
    • Programs were facilitated early or late night to support students in various time zones