|Medical Amnesty Policy|
The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) encourages a living and learning environment that promotes the health and safety of all members of the UAB community. Drug or alcohol consumption—including excessive consumption, consumption of a dangerous substance, or consumption by someone with sensitivity—can cause serious physical and neurological harm or be life-threatening. As such, students are encouraged to make responsible decisions and to seek medical attention in serious or life-threatening situations that result from alcohol and/or other drug abuse. Students are also encouraged to seek help for any situation in which medical treatment is reasonably believed to be appropriate. If a student is so intoxicated that he/she is unable to be awakened, letting that person "sleep it off" is not a reasonable alternative to getting him/her the necessary medical help. Students may be hesitant to seek assistance in such circumstances, because of fear of potential conduct consequences for themselves or because of a fear of potential conduct consequences for the person in need of medical attention.
If medical attention is required, students should immediately seek professional medical assistance by seeking the assistance by calling 911. A student who seeks emergency assistance on behalf of himself/herself, another student, or someone else who appears to be experiencing an alcohol emergency, will not be subject to conduct action under UAB Student Housing & Residential Life Conduct Procedure and the UAB Non-Academic Student Conduct Policy, except when it has been determined that another violation of university policy has occurred (for example, destruction of university property, fire safety violation, physical harm to another student, etc.).
In order for this policy to apply, the student must agree to complete recommendations made by the Coordinator of Non-Academic Student Conduct. The Coordinator of Non-Academic Student Conduct may issue educational requirements such as alcohol education and/or alcohol assessment. Failure to complete recommended requirements may result in conduct action.
Subsequent to an event that required medical attention, as a result of alcohol use, a UAB student who is eligible to receive medical amnesty, must complete and submit a written request. Request forms are available in the Office of Non-Academic Student Conduct, HUC, Room 136, and must be submitted within five (5) calendar days of the incident. The Coordinator of Non-Academic Student Conduct will meet with the student to discuss the student’s request for medical amnesty. Medical Amnesty will not be granted to students who do not seek medical assistance. This policy applies only to those students or organizations who seek medical assistance in connection to an alcohol related medical emergency and does not apply to individuals who are found by University employees (e.g., UAB Police, faculty, administrative staff, or residence hall staff), or where the reporting student(s)/organization did not stay with them. Students who are confronted by university staff (RA, or UAB Police as an example) can be referred to the Office of Non-Academic Student Conduct for conduct action.
If the student qualifies for medical amnesty, no conduct action will be taken. A student who is referred for professional services, and who fails to comply with the referral instructions, or a student determined to be in need of a medical or mental health leave may be subject to additional requirements.
If a registered student is transported to an emergency medical treatment center for alcohol intoxication, the student's parents or guardians may be notified by the Assistant Vice President for Student Life, if that is believed necessary to protect the health or safety of the student or others.
If a student is involved in a subsequent (i.e., repeat) alcohol incident, the circumstances will be evaluated by the Assistant Vice President for Student Life and/or the Coordinator of Non-Academic Student Conduct to determine if the student qualifies for medical amnesty. Serious or repeated alcohol incidents will prompt a higher degree of medical concern. The availability of medical amnesty for students with repetitive violations will be determined on a case-by-case basis.
While this policy applies to individual students, in circumstances where an organization is found to be hosting an event where medical assistance is sought for a guest, a student/ organization is required to remain with the student experiencing the medical emergency until medical assistance arrives. The organization will be eligible to apply for medical amnesty. If amnesty is granted, no organization conduct record will be created but educational interventions will be expected. If an organization has been found in violation of the university’s alcohol policy, then the organization’s willingness to seek medical assistance for another person may be viewed as a mitigating factor if or when sanctions are issued.
This policy applies only to the UAB Student Housing & Residential Life Conduct Procedures and the UAB Non-Academic Student Conduct Policy. Law enforcement agencies may act within their jurisdictions in enforcing the laws enacted by the State of Alabama, the United States, or any other state or nation where jurisdiction may be invoked.
Questions regarding the Medical Amnesty Policy should be directed to:
Coordinator of Non-Academic Student Conduct