All about HEALTH & WELLNESS Resources at the University of Toronto (2019)

All about HEALTH & WELLNESS Resources at the University of Toronto (2019)

August 31, 2019 0 By Stanley Isaacs


Hey U of T I’m Donovan and I’m here with
Alysha Bowman, who is a Health Education Coordinator at Health and Wellness. So we
work at Health and Wellness to make sure students have the tools and the supports
they need to be well. And today we’re going to be talking with the ten things
that you need to know about Health and Wellness to start the school year off
right. So first you need to know the basics. Alysha can you tell us what is
Health and Wellness where are we located and how do you get in touch? For sure! So
Health and Wellness is located at 214 College in the Koffler building, which is
actually the same building as the Bookstore. And Health and Wellness is
really going to be your on-campus location for really anything Health and
Wellness related. And so we have supports that can help you achieve your personal
and academic goals. We have a team of interdisciplinary professionals that
range from doctors, nurses, counselors, psychologists, psychiatrists, dietitians
and so many more to help you achieve those goals, and they’re right on campus.
So to make an appointment we’ll list the phone number down below. But you would
actually call in, that’s option one. So call in, speak to the receptionist, and they
can get you connected into the type of appointment and supports that you’re
looking for. Or if you’re around 214 College you can actually just stop in
and go to our primary clinic location, which is on the second floor, speak to a
receptionist and they can book you in for an appointment at a later date. Now
we do also take walk-in appointments, for same-day appointments, but those
generally fill up really fast. So unless you’re coming in like, early in the
morning right when the clinic opens, I would always just recommend calling
ahead to see if those appointments are still available. And then the other
option is, depending on the kind of appointment you’re booking, some of the
appointments can be booked online, but in order to do that you already have to be
registered with the clinic. So once you come in for your first appointment, you
can ask the receptionist or your doctor
if you’re able to book online appointments. For any subsequent
appointment after that, they should be able to tell you whether you can or
can’t. Also I just want to let you know about the hours that were open. So on
Monday and Fridays were open between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. and from Tuesday to
Thursday we’re open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. but the appointments from 5:00 to
7:00, sorry the hours from 5:00 to 7:00, are by appointment only. And if you have
any other questions, or require any other information, it can all be found on our
website which will be listed below. Thanks Alysha. Believe it or not there
is no teleprompter behind this camera, Alysha has to do that all by memory. Now
that you know where Health and Wellness is located, you might be wondering what
to expect when you actually show up. So the first thing you should know, is that
in your student fees, Health and Wellness is actually built right in. So that means
our appointments are free! And that brings us to the second thing that we
want to talk to you about. How can our team really support you? So Alysha, the
next question is, what are the services that are actually available at the Health and Wellness centre? Yeah, so I’ll start by saying that if you already have
a family doctor in your community, we always recommend that you keep going to
them because they know you best. But if the on campus Health and Wellness Centre
is the best option for you, then come on in. And when you’re coming in for your
first appointment it’s always a good idea to bring your T-card, which is your student card. So you’ll need that and then also your
health card. So whether it’s an in province health card or if you’re an
international student that’s going to be an UHIP card. If you don’t know what a
UHIP card is, or you don’t already have that, we’re going to post a link down
below. So then you can go through a step-by-step process on how to get that
printed off. I mean it’s really important to bring those two pieces to every
appointment, not just the first one. And in terms of other services that we have
at Health and Wellness, you can come to us for things like
referrals, psychotherapy, checkups, group therapy, nutritional counseling, sexual
reproductive health services, and really other information and education about on
campus community and resources. We do also offer a range of workshops. So those,
few of those are our Breathe Well Sleep Well, Better Coping Skills, Grief Support
groups, and Mindfulness workshops. Awesome. Yeah, we’re really that one-stop-shop for your
physical and mental health needs. So now that you know the where and the what of
Health and Wellness, the last thing we want to talk to you about is the who.
Right. So our third thing is around who is eligible. So who can show up and get the
help they need. Yeah so all part-time and full-time students at the University of
Toronto can access the Health and Wellness Centre and the services that
are there. If you’ve never been to the Health and Wellness Centre it’s
important for you to register. So you’d do that by calling in and speaking to
someone at the front desk and they’ll get you all registered. Or you can pop in
to 214 College and visit the clinic on the second floor and they’ll get you
registered there as well. And as I mentioned bring your T-card and
your UHIP or OHIP card to every appointment. And your first
appointment it’s always a really good idea to bring in any health records that
you previously had. So this could be like immunization records, TB testing records,
or really any other important information you think it would be good
for our staff to know. Awesome. When you feel you do need an appointment, as
Alysha kind of alluded to, keep in mind we do have a same-day clinic with a
physician and a nurse from Monday to Friday and the courses appointments can
fill up quickly. So make sure you give us a ring in advance see how we can help
you. If you do get an appointment and then
you decide – you know what I actually can’t make it – it’s really important to
give us a shout and tell us that you can’t make it. As you know we want to get
in as many students as possible so if you can give us that notice if you need
to cancel an appointment that would be great.
Another thing you should know of course is that within the bounds of the
appropriate legislation our service is completely confidential. So you can trust
in that when you show up to access our services. So the fourth thing now that we
need to know about Health and Wellness is about the intake process for mental
health. This is a question that we get all the time. So Alysha could you tell us a
little bit about that? Yeah so for mental health appointments the intake can vary
between same day upwards of two weeks generally. And this will depend on the
urgency of the matter, the time of year, in the demand, so all of those are
factors in how long it might take to get an appointment. But it actually makes the
process faster if students come to Health and Wellness having already
gotten a referral from a family doctor for services. And in the meantime if you
want to access resources more imminently then there are two resources that I want
to tell you about. So one of them is Good2Talk, and that’s a 24/7 counseling
service that’s geared towards post-secondary education students. So
we’re going to list the phone number down below. But you’d give them a call
and ask to speak to a counselor and they can provide you an on-the-spot
counseling session when you call. And it’s free to use and also the counselors
are connected in with other resources at U of T, so they can help you get
connected into resources on a more ongoing basis, if that’s what you’re
looking for. And then alternatively we have MySSP, which is similar to
Good2Talk, but it’s actually geared towards international students. The
reason being it’s counseling services but offered in over 100 languages. And My
SSP also has an app that you can download. It’ll be linked down below, as
well as the phone number that you can call.
But on the app you can actually chat with someone about your mental health
concerns in your preferred language, so that’s always a great resource that we
tend to tell students about. But also it’s important to note that if it’s an
emergency or the situation is urgent, to call 9-1-1 and/or campus police.
Absolutely. Thanks for sharing that. And you know as a student myself not long
ago, who had to sort of tango with their own mental health, those types of help
lines can be a great resource to sort of tie you over and between meetings
afterward, so we really encourage you to keep them in mind. So for those of you
who are just joining us we’re just about halfway through our ten things you need
to know about Health and Wellness broadcast. At this point you can tell
there are a range of concerns that students show up to Health and Wellness
with. So you might be wondering what can I do to set myself up for success? What
are some of the behaviors I can do and consider to really avoid some health
challenges, and to maximize my success heading into the year? So we’re going to
cheat a little bit here on our ten things you need to know, and we’re gonna
do three and a half things that you should do as the year goes on and before
the year begins. So Alysha can you start us off and we’ll just go through
each one? I’d love to! So the first thing we want you to make a habit of, is to
have a really good sleep schedule. So you should be aiming for between seven and
nine hours of sleep a night, and try to keep that consistent. I know it can be
really hard when you may have one class at 8:30 one morning and maybe the next
morning you have class at 12. The temptation is there to try to sleep in
on that second morning to make it to your class, but consistency is really key
in terms of sleep. So trying to wake up at the same time every day and going to
bed around the same time every day is really gonna help your sleep schedule.
But at the end of the day you know yourself best, so do what’s best for you
in terms of sleep schedules. Awesome. Our next one is eat well. And if you’re like
me and your undergrad all you ate were salt and vinegar chips and Pepsi,
and we don’t recommend that. So this is what I’m trying to get better with
myself, so eat well is the next thing we want you to do. So we’d ask you to think
about considering highly nutritious foods
over ones that are highly processed. Doing that can help your focus. It can
help you with a whole range of things in your life. So eat well is a key one to
consider. Yeah and building on that, trying to
move is always really important as well. So it doesn’t necessarily have to be
like an intensive rigorous process of exercise every day, but actually
incorporating like bouts of ten minutes into your schedule is really beneficial.
Not only to your physical health but your mental health, and really just
beneficial all around. So things like getting off the subway, maybe a stop
early, so then you can walk to class. Or going for a stroll with a friend in
between classes. Or having a walking meeting are all really great ways to
incorporate movement into your daily activity. Mhmm. We can be like Alysha and I,
before this podcast her and I actually benched 300 pounds each. That’s it.
That’s true. It’s fact. We don’t expect you to do that but if you can you should
try. Yeah so our last three-and-a-half thing is actually, you do you. I think
this is often everyone’s favorite of this campaign. Certainly. Yes certainly
ours. So that that half thing is to keep doing you. You do you is what we call it.
And that means make sure that even while the school year is hectic and busy and
demanding, to still find the time to seek out the things that you have interest
in, the key activities and interest that you love all year round. Make sure
they’re still a part of your life during the school year. So that leaves us with
only two things left of the ten things that you need to know about Health and
Wellness to start the year off right. So we want to move on next to talk about
not only how you can be boosting your own health and success, but also how you
can help support the whole campus and community be safer and healthier. So
Health and Wellness does offer two student workshops. Could you tell us a
little bit about those? Yeah for sure. So if you’re looking to help other people
access resources and really support their well-being, two workshops that are
really great for that are Safe Talk and Identify Assist Refer. So a Safe Talk is
a workshop where you will help learn how to connect people with thoughts of
suicide to resources and engage in conversations with them in order to get
them the support that they need. And then alternatively we have Identify Assist
Refer online, which is a 30-minute online training that will help you recognize
when a student is in distress, engage in a helpful conversation with them, and
then help them make an effective referral towards ongoing supports that
can help them support their well-being. And both Alysha I have completed
some of these trainings and they’re quick and you can learn a lot really
fast and really help other students on campus. So definitely check those out. And
thanks Alysha for that. Oh, and we will be linking it online down below too, so
check that out. Yeah you could do it right after this ends. But not during. So
our tenth, the final thing you need to know about Health and Wellness, is
actually the work that’s underway at the University of Toronto to really deepen
the commitment for the whole University, but especially the commitment for Health
and Wellness to be driven to be student driven. And all the work that we do so
over the summer you might be aware and the president Provost did announce the
launch of a student mental health task force at reach and engagement plan which
involves both online and in-person consultations that are still taking
place. So what we’re encouraging to do is this tenth and final thing is actually
to go to uoft.me/mentalhealth to learn about how you can
share your comments and your concerns and your recommendations and make sure
that your voice is a part of that ongoing conversation about mental health
on campus. So that is the conclusion of the ten things you need to know about
Health and Wellness but I am going to turn it over now. If you can believe it
or not there is a team of 40 production staff to my left, that’s 4 people with
a laptop actually, but they’re going to be fielding any questions that you have.
So if you want to comment here and we have some comments as well that came
through Instagram, and Alysha and I will do our best to answer any questions that
you have. Okay we’ll start with the comment
section. What can I do to be proactive about my mental
health on campus? Yeah that’s a great question, and happy to hear that people
are trying to be proactive about their mental health. So on top of getting
connected in with these supports at Health and Wellness, there are also these
things called Mindful Moments. So it’s a department here at the University of
Toronto and the folks there put on, I think about six, Mindful Moments sessions
a day, at various locations across campus. And Mindful Moments is a great way to
get connected in with like-minded people who are trying to be proactive about
their health and well-being. So that is a great option and then you can also take
it in combination with the various workshops and supports that Health and
Wellness puts on. Thanks for that question. Yeah, do international students
have coverage? Yeah of course. So international students
do have coverage. I talked about it a bit. But if you’re just joining us now, they
get coverage through UHIP and we’re going to post a link down below on how
to go through a step-by-step process on how you can print off UHIP because you
will need it for health coverage. And also if you come to Health and Wellness
bring that along with your T-card when you come for appointments. Thanks for asking
these questions. Questions like these really help inform all the activities
that we do with Health and Wellness, so we appreciate you following along with
this. Yeah, oh, and I also want to mention that Health and Wellness Centre is also
a preferred provider for UHIP. Which means that you can come in and
there won’t be any monetary exchange in terms of your health care coverage.
Whereas sometimes if people go off campus, there might be a slightly
slightly more complicated process. But if you have any questions about that you
can visit the Centre for International Experience website and they should be
able to answer your questions there. And you know this is a really good place to
add as well, that many of our practitioners of the Health and Wellness
Centre are trained and they want to provide care that is both culturally
competent and affirmative. So a lot of the care you’ll find at the centre is is
targeted and supported of clear students and students from all different ethnic
cultural backgrounds. So we appreciate that question. What resources are
available for mental health illness? Okay. So we had a question there about if
there were resources on campus for those with mental illness, and short answer of
course is yes. As we alluded to during our ten things you need to know throughout
campus and embedded throughout our counselors and we offer both group
therapy and individual appointments with our team of mental health nurses,
psychologists and psychiatrists for all of those needs. If you’re someone who is
already in the community being supported for your mental health through a family
physician or through psychiatrist, you can actually go on our website and find
a mental health referral form and that can help you and get connected into our
resources. Thank you. Does U of T offer physio or
chiropractor services? So the short answer for that question is no.
However if you are someone who thinks that you would benefit from physio or
chiropractor services we’d recommend coming in and talking to one of our
clinicians at the Health and Wellness Centre and at the very least we can
provide you with referral to access services like that in the community. Yeah
very good question. Yeah thanks for that question. I could
use it on saying if you can tell by my posture, but I think I need to visit a
chiropractor probably. Doesn’t it? That’s what we’re doing after this. Yeah, okay. Do
we have any other questions? So in terms of graduate students I know that on top
of the counselors that are on location at Health and Wellness there are a
number of embedded counselors throughout campus and that includes in graduate
programs where your program is housed. Donovan, do you know of any other?
No I don’t think I have anything to add, only that I would say that at the Health and
Wellness Centre we are obviously considering all of the unique needs of all different
students, both ones who are coming right out of high school, those who are
lifelong learners, and those who are graduate students. So indeed your unique
needs and they unique context being a grad student are considered and embedded
within the services. There are also a lot of grad specific orientation and
programming going on for the next week. So it might be useful to look into those
because they may have more information about grad specific programs. Definitely.
Definitely. Thanks for that question. (background talking) Okay so the GradLife Facebook page and as well
and the website we’ll have in the comment section of the Facebook Live.
Where can I find counseling services on the St. George campus? Okay, yeah, so
counseling services on the St. George campus can be found in house at in
Koffler, um so that’s at 214 College. So that’s in Health and Wellness. And then
we also have a number of embedded counselors in other departments. So we
will link to a page so you can find out if you actually have an embedded
counselor in your department. It’s the same building as the bookstore. Yeah. And
with your insurance as well it’s also an option to access community resources but
I would encourage you all to call in to Health and Wellness and they can help
discern what program or support might best suit you. Thanks for all your
questions, we weren’t expecting so many, but we’re glad to answer them all. Anything about my outfit? No but about the Pepsi. Hi maybe you already mentioned, but for the mindfulness and yoga classes does one
need to register or just show up? And I can probably answer that, it’s drop in.
Okay yeah, so for the Mindful Moments its drop-in but they also do post a schedule
online, so it might be best to go see what time and what building things are
going on. And yeah I encourage you to check those out because they’re really great.
Awesome. That’s it. Okay. So thank you again for joining us, and we really
appreciate talking to you and all of your questions, and thank you very much
to Alysha for helping answer all the student questions that we had and
telling us more about the Health and Wellness Centre. We hope we’ll see you
again soon. So in the fall, come back here on Facebook Live, and I’m going to
be talking to two clinicians from the Health and Wellness Centre to give you a
little bit of an inside scoop about what you can expect when you show up to access
our services. So we hope we’ll see you then. Until then, bye for now, and we’ll
see you in the fall!