Women’s Health

Last reviewed: 7/19/2023

Women's care is provided by excellent primary care providers, health promotion specialists, and peer advocates; all of whom are experienced in women’s health and are considerate of the sensitive nature of the visit. Our providers are attuned to the sexual, psychosocial, gynecologic, and body image needs that are part of providing comprehensive women’s health care.

    Get Connected with Care

    Birth control (including oral pill, IUD insertion, and contraceptive injections)

    Periodic health (well woman) examinations and gynecological concerns

    STI/HIV testing and treatment

    Pregnancy support (testing and evaluation, options counseling, etc.):

    • No-cost pregnancy testing is available at Medical Services. To get tested, a student may call 212-854-7426 to schedule a nursing appointment. A urine sample will be collected.
    • If a student has an unplanned pregnancy, they can make an appointment with their primary care provider at Medical Services via the Patient Portal or by calling 212-854-7426 to discuss their options.
    • For prenatal care, students can speak to their primary care provider to get a referral to an ob-gyn clinic.
    • Pregnancy Complications: Minor spotting or cramps may be normal in pregnancy. However, bleeding and severe cramping can be signs of complications. If a student experiences these symptoms during their pregnancy, it is important to contact their obstetrician. The obstetrics clinics at Columbia University Medical Center can schedule a same-day appointment if their condition warrants immediate attention.

    Emergency contraception:

    Still not sure where to start?

    Students can schedule a health promotion appointment to learn about services and get directed to the most appropriate resource for their needs.

    What Does a Well Woman Examination Include?

    • Examination of the thyroid gland, neck, lungs, heart, breasts, abdomen, and skin
    • Cervical cancer screening (PAP smear)
    • Sexually transmitted infections (STI) testing
    • Prescription for contraception, if requested

    When To Get a Pap Smear:

    • Cervical cancer screening (Pap smear) should begin at age 21.
    • Women under age 21 who need contraception or STI screening may do so without having a cervical cancer screening exam.
    • Cervical cancer screening is recommended every three years for women aged 21 to 29 who are healthy and have had normal exams in the past.
    • Women age 30 and older should speak with their provider about whether they should have cervical cancer screenings every five years.
    • Women with certain risk factors may need more frequent screening, including those who have HIV, are immunosuppressed, or have had abnormal cervical screening test results in the past.