Students who have had difficulty making appointments at the Health Center because it’s closed during lunchtime may soon find one of their problems cured.
Medical Director of Health Services Dr. Jessica Higgs said the center will be open from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, beginning Oct. 15.
The Health Center is currently closed from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., which makes scheduling appointments difficult for students who don’t have free time besides at lunch, she said.
“This will sort of be a trial run between Fall Break and Christmas, and then it will be re-evaluated at that time,” Higgs said.
“I think [the Health Center] taking their lunch later would help more people,” junior psychology major Kelly Rogers said. “Even taking lunch at 1 or 2 [p.m.] because lunchtime is when most people do their running around.”
Hours of operation is one of the many changes Higgs is making in her new position, as this is her first year on campus.
Higgs said she is looking to create better communication with students and is considering creating a student advisory committee.
“[I] like the idea of getting more direct feedback from the students,” she said. “As well as the opportunity to explain why we do things a certain way.”
Bradley Student Health identification cards are in the works, Higgs said. These cards will include Health Services’ address and phone number, and a place for the student’s name, hometown doctor and Peoria hospital preference.
“It’s designed to help facilitate communication between the emergency rooms and prompt cares within the area with Health Services,” she said. “It will allow students to always have our contact [information] with them if they need us.”
Health Services will move to the Markin Family Student Recreation Center over Fall Break. It will open Oct. 15, more than a week before the rest of the facilities in the building become available for use.
Health Services will be on the first floor and counseling will be in the basement.
Having the two departments in the same building should create better communication between them versus being divided between Heitz and Harper Halls as they are now, Higgs said
“Markin will have a different feel from Heitz just in the simple fact that it is new,” she said. “I think most students will find that it feels more like a typical doctor’s office.”
It will also include some new equipment and one more exam room, Higgs said.
Health Services will participate in Markin Dedication Day on Oct. 23 by offering flu shots for $25 to students, faculty and staff from 1 to 5 p.m.
“The fee is less than they would pay at the public health department,” Higgs said.
Students should take advantage of this cost-effective and proactive approach to protecting themselves in case the flu invades campus this winter, she said.
A final change that may be made to Health Services is an updated Web site.
Higgs said Student Body Vice President Ben Koch has talked to her about possible upgrades, but no changes have been finalized.