The mission of the Birkam Health Center is to complement the academic mission by assisting
students, their families, and other targeted university groups to achieve their optimum
level of health so that they can participate in the formal learning process at Ferris
Our Center is a walk-in or by-appointment medical clinic staffed by providers and
registered nurses. We encourage students to view us as their doctor while away from
Student Affairs and Ferris Mission
The current Health Center was founded in 1960. In 1969 Frederick Birkam, M.D., came
to the Health Center and stayed until his death in 1981. The Health Center was dedicated
to Dr. Birkam on October 15, 1988, and the name was changed to the Birkam Health Center.
The terms "assessment" or "evaluation" are not unfamiliar to the staff at the Health
Center. The medical team continually employs clinical assessment in the treatment
process of every patient to determine the basis for treatment. All staff regard the
"patient encounter" at the Health Center as being critical to clinical outcomes, patient
satisfaction, and to our accountability with external constituents including Ferris
State University, the State of Michigan, and our accrediting bodies.
Several assessment activities occur each semester or on an annual basis at the Health
- Patient Satisfaction Survey
A sample of patients is surveyed each semester for their satisfaction of services.
A paper/pencil series of questions related to receptionist, clinical and billing contacts
as well as health education and classroom retention and attendance issues are asked
of the students.
- Medical Chart Evaluation
A Health Center work team regularly samples medical charts for accuracy and quality
according to documentation, coding, and billing. This is a requirement by the Federal
Department of Health and Human Services.
- The University (Instructional Research and Testing, the Health Center and the Counseling
Center) administers the National College Health Assessment (NCHA) to identify Ferris
State University student health attitudes and behaviors and to compare them to a vast
national sample of college students on a year-to-year basis. This provides benchmark
data and information on our own students which provides a basis for treatment and
intentional programming at both the Health Center and Counseling Center.