Archive for Thursday, August 18, 2005

Health center offers care for BU students

August 18, 2005

A renovated home on the southeast corner of Sixth and Grove streets houses Baker University's Student Health and Counseling Center, a place that stays busy accommodating the health needs of 900 students.

Treatment for minor illnesses, throat cultures and blood work are some of the services offered at the walk-in clinic.

"For a small campus, I think we provide extensive care," said Ruth Sarna, director of Student Health Services. "Usually we can do the strep screenings. If I do that and the doctors are not here, I can call them and they'll let me order a prescription. It's really excellent coverage for the kids."

In 2004-2005, Sarna said she averaged 16 students daily and there were more than 2,500 visits at the center the entire school year.

"I do a lot of throat cultures and receive help by contracting with LMH (Lawrence Memorial Hospital)," said Sarna, who's been at Baker for 16 years.

Sarna also contracts with four physicians through the University of Kansas. The physicians are in Baldwin Tuesday morning, Wednesday afternoon and Friday morning.

"They write the prescriptions," Sarna said.

Baker students also can visit Watkins Memorial Hospital on the KU campus.

"The students have to use their insurance card and Baker ID to be seen at Watkins," Sarna said

Early in their freshman year, students are urged to visit the health center and counseling center.

"It breaks the ice so they can meet me," she said. "I'm easy to be around and know where were located."

In the fall, Sarna trains residence hall staff in first aid. Emergency care is available through the Baldwin station of the Douglas County Ambulance Service.

"I train the residence assistants each year just for basic things they would be confronted with at 2 a.m. in the morning to know how to deal with them," Sarna said. "The home managers or RAs decide to call the ambulance or me. I live in Lawrence, but the kids have my home number. If they can't find someone, they can call me. I don't want them to go without assistance."

Sarah Hastings, a licensed psychologist, directs Baker's counseling center. The center covers such issues as stress, adjustment to college, family problems, depression, text anxiety, self-esteem and grief.

"It's a short-term solution," Sarna said of Baker's counseling services. "If it's a long-term concern, Sarah will connect the students with help in Kansas City or Lawrence for follow-up care."

Health Center Services

Treatment of minor illnesses and general health care needs

Allergy injections during hours the physician is present (the extract and the physician order must be furnished by the student)

Throat cultures, pregnancy tests and urinalysis

Blood work done at the center is sent to a certified outside lab

Tuberculosis screening tests

Flu shots, hepatitis A and B, Twinrix, Menactra (meningitis) and tetanus shots for a fee

Over-the-counter medications

Consultation about sexually oriented matters

Printed educational materials

Consultation, advice and appropriate referrals

Resource information and support groups as needed

Referral to community health care providers and agencies

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