Wellness Center prepares for flu season

Flu season is here, which makes the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic all the more harrowing, but Stevenson University is doing its part to address the double threat head-on.

For instance, Stevenson’s Wellness Center prioritized providing the entire Mustang community comprehensive access to flu shots early on. In order to do so, the Center “partnered with Giant to continue our flu shot clinics,” the Center’s Assistant Director and Nurse Practitioner, Tracy L. Turner, said. This service, which started on Tues., Sept. 22, and ended on Oct. 8, offered on-campus flu vaccinations to all Stevenson students, faculty, and staff.

In addition to the on-campus flu shots, Stevenson Wellness implemented a randomized COVID-19 surveillance testing method to identify possible asymptomatic coronavirus cases among its student population. Students that are selected for these ongoing tests will be notified through their email and given a week’s notice prior to its administration. The test is free of cost.

As of Sept. 28, a total of 1,187 resident students have received COVID-19 tests since the testing of returning students began on Aug. 17. Since then, 53 of those test results came back positive, and seven showed inconclusive results.

Stevenson’s Wellness Center is going above and beyond to ensure the community’s safety, but Turner recommends that the Mustang community must do its part too. Turner added that it’s important for everyone to “practice good hand hygiene, maintain proper physical distancing, wear your face coverings, and complete the symptom tracker daily.”

Since flu season is just around the corner, Turner said that getting vaccinated and maintaining healthy habits—no smoking, getting plenty of rest, limiting alcohol, avoiding drug use and excessive stress, and dressing appropriately for the weather—will also boost one’s immunity and reaction to the disease.

Stevenson Wellness Center, located in Caves.

Stevenson sophomore and pre-med student Ashley Guzman Martinez said that the Wellness Center’s attempts at keeping everyone safe have been a “good effort,” but she stressed the importance of communal effort, as well. And so far, so good for Guzman Martinez. “I do feel safe actually,” she said. “I mean, I’m normally going down to eat and stuff. I feel safe that people are actually following the guidelines.”

Turner added that Stevenson Wellness currently offers “offering telemedicine with our physician, Dr. Davis, as well as telemental health [services] with our counselors.” Students can call the Wellness Center to schedule an appointment at 443-352-4200