Wellness Wednesday provides the University of Louisiana at Lafayette community with various medical examinations and services, and after the spike of COVID-19, those involved are pushing towards bringing in more visitors.
Run by nursing students, Wellness Wednesday is a free clinic for students, faculty and staff. Faculty members in the nursing department are only there to facilitate and guide the students during the process.
According to the UL Lafayette website, “The goal of Wellness Wednesday is to promote healthy behaviors and lifestyles among the UL community, while allowing our nursing students to share their health care knowledge.”
The services offered at the clinic, according to the website, include blood pressure screenings, pulse and oxygenation screenings, blood glucose screenings, osteoporosis screenings, hearing screenings, vision screening, cholesterol screenings for faculty and staff only, body composition analysis, personalized education plans and updated web links for the latest health information.Returning patients come back to keep track of and monitor their health as they continue to visit the clinic.
Dr. Cynthia Suire, an assistant professor in the nursing department and a second semester junior coordinator whose students are involved in Wellness Wednesdays, shared how some of the UL Lafayette community might not be aware that they are still doing these services, which has affected their numbers coming out of the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We struggled a little bit after COVID to get our count back up and our census,” Suire said.
After not having Wellness Wednesday for three semesters, the nursing students and faculty are starting to see their attendance get back to the numbers they saw before COVID-19.
Despite some spotty numbers after starting again, this semester, the amount of patients picked up, and they’ve been able to see as much as 30 patients during their operating hours.
However, according to Suire, they have been experiencing some difficulties having a consistent patient flow, and are working towards bringing these services to the student’s and faculty’s attention.
“I guess it all has to do with, not so much what we’re doing there, but getting the word out, so that we’ve got a steady kind of census coming in, so that we can continue using this as a learning lab for our students,” Suire said.
The clinic is working with people at the university to help with new logos and new branding and advertising methods.
The clinic’s current best advertisement is patients who have visited and spread the information to others, according to Suire.
She also shared how the hecticness of people’s lives might lead to some not going to the clinic or being as concerned about their health.
“So we’re working at it from several different points of view, to make it more appealing for people to come in,” Suire said. “It is for wellness, and sometimes wellness takes a little backseat when we’re very, very busy.”
Suire said getting to college students, who have not had certain screenings for a while or do not think to go and get some medical checks to prevent chronic diseases and long-term effects is one of the clinic’s objectives with getting more patients.
“You’d be very surprised how many students come in, and they’ve got some hearing concerns because they haven’t had hearing checks since they were 4 years old or 5 years old,” Suire said.
Students and faculty can find Wellness Wednesday in the parking garage of Wharton Hall in room 115.
The clinic is open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Wednesdays. The last remaining day for the clinic this semester is April 19.
Suire shared how patients will also be learning along with nursing students at the clinic.
“The patient will get the results of it, but they’ll get all the patient education associated with their results interpretation,” Suire said.
To find out more information about future Wellness Wednesdays, go to the UL Lafayette website.