The voice of De Anza since 1967.

La Voz News

The voice of De Anza since 1967.

La Voz News

The voice of De Anza since 1967.

La Voz News

    Health Center provides accessible medical services

    For Mary Sullivan, Health Coordinator at De Anza College, the new health care bill’s provision that children may stay on their parents’ health care plans past the age of 24 is the most important reform. However, this provision will not be implemented until 2014. For now, Sullivan can offer uninsured students seeking medical care a list of low-cost or no-cost community medical clinics near De Anza.

    The Health Center can provide students with first aid, free flu shots and Tuberculosis screening, blood pressure checks, pregnancy tests and over-the-counter medications. Also, the office pays great attention to education in the field of women’s health.

    The Health Center offers a wide range of condoms, “of many sizes and shapes,” Sullivan says, and other contraception methods and instruction.

    Also, the office offers reduced cost doctor or nurse practitioner services including office visits, physical examinations, emergency contraception and immunizations against hepatitis B, measles, mumps, rubella and chicken pox, among others.

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    In addition, the office can help students to quit smoking. Mary-Jo Lomax, De Anza health educator, works with students through one-on-one counseling or support groups, Sullivan said. The office offers nicotine gum and patches to those who want to quit smoking.

    In February, the center conducted a survey of its patients. It showed that on average, 70 to 80 students a day walk in to the office without an appointment.

    “They would come for an over-the-counter medicine, to ask a question about health, to schedule an appointment, a question about insurance or where to get a medical care,” Sullivan said. Also, during the last flu season, they provided 1,300 shots against H1N1 and the same amount of shots against the common flu.

    The Health Center also keeps a list of low-cost and no-cost clinics in the county.

    “If you call 211 for services in Santa Clara county, the United Way offers a hotline in 140 languages where you can get any information about social services in the area. You can call them if you’re looking for shelter, low-cost housing, [or] food stamps. It’s marvelous service,” she said.

    In an emergency, a 911 call can be made through the office, though the Center also offers first response, Sullivan said.

    But first and foremost, Sullivan pays attention to health education, as she herself is a specialist in this area. Two upcoming events are particularly important to De Anza students.

    “Walk a Mile In Her Shoes,” the YMCA of Silicon Valley’s eighth annual sexual assault awareness event, will take place on April 21 at Cezar Chavez Plaza. The event features men walking a mile in women’s high-heeled shoes to literally “put themselves in her shoes.” A De Anza team will be participating.

    Gabrielle Antolovich, executive director for the Silicon Valley affiliate of the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, will address alcohol education on April 29 in Campus Center rooms A and B.

    “It will be an exciting event,” Sullivan says. “Antolovich is very skilled educator.”

    The Health Center is open from 8 a.m. to 8.30 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and Fridays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. “It’s our job, to seek out community services and offer them to the students,” Sullivan says.

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