The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

City College Health & Wellness Services are now Available Online!

Graphic created using by Amaya Torres | Features Editor | [email protected]

In the last year, the pandemic has caused all aspects of City College to mold to newfound conditions. In the pre-COVID-19 era, City College offered health services in person, and Los Rios health services departments worked independently to serve each school. 

Wendy Gomez, the City College nurse, said she was used to seeing students face-to-face until spring 2020. According to Gomez, all of that had to change quickly when campus closures were enforced.

“One of the things we implemented was an appointment system through our electronic medical record system, and that is what the patient portal is. Now we have a secure way to communicate with our students,” Gomez said. “That was an issue because we cannot send medical information electronically through email because it is not secure. But with a patient portal we can communicate with a student via messages or sending them documents if they need it.”

However, Gomez said, students, especially those new to City College, do not know much about the patient portal or where to find it. In most cases faculty and counselors over the last year have encountered students who are in need of health services and referred them to Gomez, who contacts students directly. 

The Health and Wellness Services provides physical and mental health services for all current students. Gomez recommended that students with symptoms of illness or injuries make an appointment to talk to a physician or a nurse practitioner who can give a diagnosis and prescribe necessary medication over the phone. 

Diedre Gilliam, recently appointed Health and Wellness Director for the Los Rios Community College District, works with nurses at each of the four colleges to transition from in-person to remote care for students. 

“We have come together as a team really well. I think all of the [nurses] would say the same thing because they didn’t really work as a team before that. They were each working at their separate colleges. There really is strength in numbers,” Giliam said. “Everybody comes with different talents — different strengths — but when you put them all together, we can do some awesome stuff. That is the way we look at it and our focus is what we can do for our students.”

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Moving forward, Gilliam said that she and all district nurses will work together to provide services remotely to ensure everyone’s safety. As the colleges transition back to their campuses, the team will decide how best to continue operations in collaboration with district and college administrators and county and state health officials. 

“It really depends on what they decide as far as how many students are going to be back on the ground. Then I will try to figure out what kind of services we need. If students are around, we will need to be there. It is just a matter of what kind of services we will have,” Gilliam said.

According to Gilliam,  the health and wellness team is working on expanding on-ground clinics to provide more services to students when everyone is back on campus grounds. Until the health and wellness services are back on campuses, students will be directed to the Health and Wellness Services Website where there are “all-in-one” resources for students to receive care through Telehealth options like TimelyMD and TalkNow. 

“If [students] can’t get hold of our staff, or it is after hours — even on the weekend —  TimelyMD is there. It is totally free and confidential,” Gillian said. “A TimelyMD [session] is between them and the person that they talk to. It never comes back to college.”

According to Gilliam, Telehealth resources are available to students 24 hours a day for free. Students with needs ranging from mental health support to common cold symptoms can utilize Telehealth through the City College website. 

Gilliam wants to make all students aware of the resources available to support their well being, no matter what their needs may be.

“If there is anything we can do for our students to provide that kind of emotional support and to help out with the stuff that has been happening, [we’ll do it],” Gilliam said. “We are all being affected.”
For more information on these services provided by City College, visit the Health & Wellness Services  webpage.

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