Student Health Services to remain operational during COVID-19

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Mesa Audio/Visual Dept.

Student Health Services at Mesa

Lance Nelson, Editor-in-Chief

As faculty and staff work around-the-clock to ensure student safety during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, Mesa’s Student Health Services is still available. For medical, nursing, and mental health counseling, students are asked to call 619-388-2774. Call Center business hours are Monday through Thursday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Friday 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

Although campus is currently closed to students for the week of March 16, Student Health Director Suzanne Khambata wants to reassure patients that the phone lines and campus emails are open for those needing help. For students who rely on these free medical services, this news will come as a relief. Students will be treated case-by-case for individualized care. 

This is an important resource as students self-isolate and can easily fall behind on taking care of themselves. The sudden lack of routine tends to increase stress in those treating mental health. That is why communicating any struggles is highly encouraged. For those who are utilizing Mesa’s free counseling opportunities, staying in contact with the designated therapist is imperative. 

Realizing that prevention is just as important as treatment, Mesa has gone one step further to foster a healthy environment during this tough time by creating the “Circle of Prevention.” The mission: keep the community informed and updated on developing news. This includes providing important links to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), sharing symptoms to be aware of, and suggesting a wide range of tips to stay healthy. These can be found here.

In the case that an individual is suffering from anxiety or fear during this time, Mesa has put together a “How to Cope with Anxiety about Coronavirus” page. From restricting news to reliable sources to remembering the controllable aspects of life like practicing good hygiene and getting seven to nine hours of sleep, the new page has ample tips to ease stress. This can be found here.

Supporting a healthy immune system is the first defense in preventing illness. To best achieve this, eat a balanced diet, stay active by watching free at-home YouTube workouts, manage stress by avoiding social media and other anxiety triggers, and rest assured that the community will get through this together. Just because classes will not be meeting in-person, the Mesa faculty is just as invested in student success as ever. An important message for those who heavily rely on that support system. The Mesa Press has also put together some suggestions on boosting the immune system here.

Keeping that in mind, it’s important to understand that no one is truly alone. Stay in contact with friends and family through texts, calls, or FaceTime. If that isn’t an option, Mesa suggests that students struggling with this change seek professional help from a licensed mental health professional if necessary. The Employee Assistance Program, which can help with work issues, counseling, parenting, child or elder care, financial advice, and other stress triggers, can be reached at 888-625-4809.

A crisis line is also available for mental health concerns at 888-724-7240. This service is available 24/7. A text option is also available by texting “courage” to 741741. Urgent walk-ins are also available throughout the community at designated clinics. For a full list of locations, check here.

Regarding classes, online instruction is scheduled to begin March 23. Faculty and staff have been great at keeping students updated on this upcoming shift in learning. And while some may have reservations about online learning, it’s been made clear that Mesa’s team is ready and strongly believes that students can do this. Again, reaching out for help is always encouraged.

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