Cold and flu season is here but students do not have to fear because campus has got them covered. The University Health & Counseling Services (UHCS) at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater recently held two flu shot clinics Monday Nov. 12 and Wednesday Nov. 28 at Andersen Library for both students and staff.
The cost for a flu shot through UHCS is $10 for students and $15 for staff. Along with the shot, students also are gifted a free cold care kit that includes information on what to do when you have a cold, a Whitewater cup for fluids, chapstick, soup and even a digital thermometer.
UW-W’s UHCS is currently reaching out to the leadership at the University of Wisconsin-Rock County to provide flu clinics for students at that campus.
“Healthcare doesn’t just happen inside these walls here at Ambrose Health Center,” said the Health Director for UHCS Julie Martindale. “Something we are really trying to do is continue to utilize other locations on campus. Andersen Library was a phenomenal partner with us for November’s Flu Shot Clinic. I was actually walking around Andersen during the clinic telling people we were upstairs and a bunch of people came up.”
Erica Fischer, the wellness coordinator at UHCS shared the emphasis she puts on students’ overall well-being and the importance of care during the winter season.
“I’m funded by students so my job is to be a support system and advocate for student’s needs,” said Fischer. “We know that a student’s success in the classroom is highly dependent on the overall well-being whether that’s physical, social or anything of the other seven dimensions of wellness” said Fischer.
UHCS’s standards for safety and high quality care are recognized by the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC). This is an organization that recognizes other primary care clinics in the United States.
“We are a primary care clinic with two physicians, four nurse practitioners and multiple medical assistants,” said Martindale. “What sets us apart from all the primary care clinics on Main Street is that everything we do is designed for young adults.”
UHCS not only provides healthcare but also counseling services that are aimed to address student’s mental health concerns. A certified trainer in the suicide prevention training model Question Persuade Refer (QPR) helps alongside other campus representatives to train students to feel more prepared with how to safely and effectively converse with a suicidal person.
UW-W’s UHCS Assistant Director of Counseling Services Matt Malin emphasized the role of mental health and education as proponents that go hand in hand.
“How can you achieve your goals if a lot of time and energy from a mental health concern is diverting your way? It takes a lot of courage to acknowledge that you’re struggling, but once you do reach out, students would be surprised how helpful it can be to even just start talking about it and find out they aren’t alone.” said Malin.
Individuals of 18 years or older are provided with complete confidentiality through all services at UHCS including mental health and Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) testing.
“Going to a physician, a nurse practitioner or a doctor can be scary. One of the things we’ve been pushing this last year to do for organizations and students is to set up times after hours to give tours of our office and facilities,” said Martindale. “We want to do everything we can for people to learn more about what we do and feel more comfortable using our services.”
UHCS will be sponsoring the Fuel up for Finals event Dec. 12 in the University Center where students can decompress with games, crafts and more and study in designated quiet zones.
For questions or scheduling an appointment with UHCS access their website at http://www.uww.edu/uhcs/, call 262-472-1300, make an appointment online at the secure Electronic Medical Records portal, or visit Ambrose Health Center between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.