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Health Center offers free services

Lenka Schalkle, staff assistance at the health center, informs,Yiyun Pan 20, on breast cancer awareness and the importance on checkups and mammograms on Monday October 21, 2013. Harim Arjon/Telescope
Lenka Schalkle, staff assistance at the health center, informs,Yiyun Pan 20, on breast cancer awareness and the importance on checkups and mammograms on Monday October 21, 2013. Harim Arjon/Telescope

There seems to be a reoccurring theme at Palomar. Students are unaware of beneficial programs that are included with their enrollment. One important program, and one that is commonly unknown to students, is their ability to access free healthcare on campus.

Part of enrollment, for full and part-time students, is a state-mandated $19 fee. This fee is paid per semester and gives students, on both campuses, admittance to the Health Center.

At the Health Center students can access medications, screenings, immunizations, and schedule visits with doctors and nurses on campus.

According to Lenka Schalkle, a staff member at the Health Center, student participation, “varies from 20, to maybe 80, to almost 100 students, depending on what type of day we have.”

These students, Schalkle went on to say, “are usually coming to the front desk to pick up band-aids, Tylenol, or to check-in with an appointment for the doctor.”

The Health Center can also cater to more specific needs. This includes feminine products and exams, men’s health screening, and substance abuse counseling. The depth of resources at the Health Center is designed to suit a variety of student needs.

Schalkle, added, “our main mission is to keep all the students on campus healthy so we can support their academic success.”

Having programs such as the Health Center can help students avoid costly medical bills. This could be especially important to community college students, many of whom, work full-time jobs and pay for school out of pocket.

Cody Gearhart, a third-year Palomar student, was recently told about the Health Center when his EMT 106 class required him to get an immunization shot.

Gearhart acknowledged the notion of low student awareness and pointed out that, “the Health Center isn’t talked about much. Teachers don’t talk about in classrooms, and it just isn’t broadcasted well.”

Gearhart added: “lots of students don’t know that it’s free and it would really save them money. But I guess they just don’t know about it.”

One thing that is certain; students are paying for it. The Health Center is available on campus Monday-Friday and can be reached at 760-744-1150 x 2380.

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