By Lezlee Gutierrez, Student Reporter
Professors have seen an increase in the number of ill students on campus this semester, but according to the Health Clinic staff, this is not a rare situation for this time of year.
“It is a combination of the fluctuation of the weather lately, as well as the preparation for Sing Song,” said Kathy Stokes, Health Clinic office manager. “Students are staying up later than usual, and along with the stress increase, they are getting sick from the other students they are around.”
Students tend to make their way to the Health Clinic every year around this time. The medical clinic had more than 1,000 visits last semester, and about the same amount of students already has used the Health Clinic so far.
In the past week, medical staff referred 40 students to the emergency room and the walk-in clinic. Fewer students were treated in the Health Clinic this semester because of a lack of physicians, but ACU will be getting a new physician the last week of February.
“I had strep throat in December and then I got sick with a sinus infection just recently,” said Andrea Reed, junior education major from Abilene. “I am glad I did not have to miss class, but I made sure I got antibiotics as soon as I started feeling bad.”
The most common illness among students has been strep have to miss class, but I made sure I got antibiotics as soon as I started feeling bad.”
The most common illness among students has been strep throat, followed by sinus infections and the flu. The Health Clinic recommends all students who have not been ill in the last week to get a flu shot. The medical staff administered 350 flu shots last year and less than that this year. The flu shots normally cost $20, but the Health Clinic will offer a $5 discount to students who come in for their flu shot before Sing Song.
Flu-like symptoms include body aches, sore throat, fever and congestion. The medical staff urges students to seek medical attention within the first 24 hours of exhibiting these symptoms to avoid prolonging the flu.
“Anyone who gets sick and does not get treated within the first 24-48 hours will most likely be stuck with the flu and will need to rest and recover for 7-10 days,” Stokes said. “This also includes missing class and other activities to avoid spreading the virus.”
The medical staff also warns students to avoid caffeinated drinks when they are ill because of the large amounts of sugar they contain.
The medical staff suggests students get plenty of rest, keep awy from frequently visited areas such as restrooms and desks, avoid drinking after other people and washingn your hands frequently throughout the day.
For further information, or to schedule an appointment, contact the Health Clinic at 674-2625 or visit the clinic in McKinzie Hall Room 101.