Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Student Health

    Hey guys, it’s Brynna here to give you the run-down on the student health center at UVA.
Something you’ll learn quickly about college is that, no matter how many vegetables you eat or
how many miles you run, you’re most likely going to get sick at some point. It’s an unfortunate truth
about living so close to so many people and using so many of the public facilities and amenities that
UVA offers students.
    Luckily Elson Student Health Center, located on the corner of Jefferson Park Avenue and
Brandon Avenue, has your back. Student Health appointments are free for students, but services
like vaccinations, lab testing, prescriptions, and the like are sent to your health insurance company
and any remaining charges are charged to your student account. Peruse the different services that
Student Health offers below.
Photo courtesy of the Cavalier Daily
Primary Care
   You can go get an immunization here, or go get checked out if you think you might have any
type of acute illness or infection. Primary Care is staffed by doctors, physician’s assistants,
nurse practitioners, and nurses who are all there to help you. They can write you a prescription,
order a lab test, give you crutches or a brace/sling, or refer you to a specialist at the UVA Medical
Center down the street.
    A staff of friendly and helpful gynecologists, nurse practitioners, triage nurses, and medical
students make up the Gynecology Department at Student Health. This department offers services
for well woman issues, such as contraception and STI screenings, as well as common gynecologic
concerns like UTIs and menstrual issues. These services are free and confidential, and the staff works
hard to make sure that this department is welcoming, inclusive, and comfortable for every student
who might need them.
    I’ve only heard positive stories about friends’ experiences at Gynecology at Student Health, and
I’ve only had positive experiences myself. It’s important that students think of gynecological care
as a normal part of taking care of themselves, and this department is full of awesome medical
professionals who are here to help you with that.
    Have a prescription you need refilled regularly? Just prescribed an antibiotic by a medical
professional at Primary Care? Good thing the pharmacy is right there! The same way you would
fill a prescription at any other pharmacy, the Student Health Pharmacy will make sure you have the
medications you need without having to go very far.
    Right down the hall from Primary Care is a lab, where you can complete any tests that your
doctor might order for you. I found it convenient to have these services in the same building as
the place where they are ordered and read. If you think you might have strep throat or need some
bloodwork done, this is where you’ll go.
Allergy Clinic
    This department works through students’ Allergists at home, ensuring that students can continue
the immunotherapy they had before coming to UVA. The Allergy Clinic is here to help students
who might mismanage their allergy, display different symptoms than before, or just find themselves
struggling with the pollen count in Charlottesville (the beautiful flowers come at a price, let me tell you).
    The Nutrition Department’s services are completely free for students and completed by registered
dietitians and peer health educators (PHEs). Students can seek out these services to learn about healthy
eating habits in general, but also can seek out help for eating disorders or weight management. This
department typically stops services after 12 visits, but will refer students to specialists in
Charlottesville if they feel a student needs long-term consultation. The Nutrition Department is
awesome, and all students could benefit from their services in some capacity.
Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)
    CAPS offers free clinical services for students experiencing stress, anxiety, depression,
family problems, relationship difficulties, substance abuse issues, trauma, academic concerns, and
much more. A team of clinical psychologists and counselors are happy to help you temporarily, or
long-term. Visit their website (http://studenthealth.virginia.edu/caps) for more details on how they
serve students, and which student concerns should be addressed by CAPS and which should be
addressed by another long-term care provider. Your mental health is important, and CAPS is here to
make sure that you’re taking care of yourself not just physically, but mentally and emotionally as well.

That’s all I have for you today folks. Keep checking in on this blog for more posts on UVA student life
from yours truly and my fellow summer interns and remember, a healthy hoo is a happy hoo!

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