Student Health Services Provides Free Flu Shots
Published: Friday, October 5, 2012
Updated: Friday, October 5, 2012 02:10
With flu season approaching, the university is offering free vaccines to students, faculty and staff.
Student nurses will administer the shots through Nov. 14 in Yates Field House, Sellinger Lounge, McShain Lounge and the Harris Building on Whitehaven Avenue. Vaccines are free to anyone who presents a valid GoCard.
According to Jean Farley, an assistant professor in the School of Nursing and Health Studies, the Sellinger Lounge option was added this year to expand the program’s reach.
Typically, between 4,000 and 5,000 students, faculty and staff receive vaccinations, according to James Welsh, assistant vice president of Student Health Services.
Though the university has long provided flu vaccinations, Georgetown began offering the shots for free in 2001. In order to provide the service, the Student Health Center funds student vaccinations, while the University Benefits Office pays for the shots for faculty and staff.
“We believe that this program has a positive impact on the overall health of our community and leads to lower numbers of influenza cases,” Welsh said.
Students agreed that the shots are important to campus health.
“I get sick pretty often,” Alexis Hofschneider (COL ’15) said. “The virus changes every year, so I feel I should get the yearly shot.”
Colin Sawyer (SFS ’16) said he usually doesn’t get a flu shot but will this year.
“I am going to get one ... because they are free and convenient to get on campus,” he said.
For the students who administer the vaccines, the clinics provide hands-on experience that is part of their coursework in nursing.
“It was good experience to practice my skills, to interact with people and to talk about the issues of flu season,” Arlena Ferrandiz-Myers (NHS ’12) said.
Carol Cowdrey (NHS ’12), another student nurse, estimated that about 130 people had already showed up to be vaccinated by Tuesday morning.
Student nurses said they expected the vaccines, which are provided on a first-come, first-serve basis, will continue to be popular.
“People haven’t stopped coming,” Ferrandiz-Myers said. “We should have a pretty good turnout.”