Wellness Information


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Hours: Mon-Fri, 8:00 - 4:30
Phone: 262-472-1300

For health care questions, do not email. Please call the number above, menu option 1.

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Click Here to Submit a question to Ask UHCS

Ask UHCS provides general physical and mental health information only and should not be considered specific medical or psychological advice, a diagnosis, treatment or a second opinion. If you have an existing condition that could be adversely affected by information provided on this site, or if you have an urgent health problem consult with a health care provider before acting on information contained here.

Newest Question

Does UHCS have a dietitian or nutritionist?
Answer by Ruth Swisher, RN, MS, Director of Health

UHCS employs medical/nursing and health educator staff. These staff members offer basic nutrition guidance to assist students with a healthy lifestyle and to make healthy nutrition choices. Call 262-472-1300 for an appointment.

Is it free to get STI Testing?
Answer by Ruth Swisher, RN, MS, Director of Health

UHCS offers STI testing based on the medical needs of the student-patient, when seen by a physician or nurse practitioner during their medical appointment.  Costs for testing may be covered by either a program with Public Health or with the "Family Planning Only Services" (FPOS); both programs are available all students.  The clinical provider will assist with program enrollment.  Call 262-472-1300 for an appointment or book on-line at the UHCS website. 

Previously submitted questions and answers:

Lately I have been feeling down. I don't feel like hanging out with my friends or doing anything at all. I don't enjoy many activities and am tired all the time. I have trouble sleeping at night and I have lost some weight. What could be the cause of this?
Answer by Matt Mallin, MSSA, LCSW, Assistant Director, Counseling Services

The symptoms and issues you are describing sound very much like possible signs of depression. While there is no way to say that for certain without speaking to you more, we’d strongly encourage you visit UHCS and come talk to a counselor about these symptoms. There’s not always a way to know what “causes” the depression in the first place but the good news is that depression (or whatever you are experiencing) is very treatable and is often helped through having someone to talk to about it. One of the things we know is that the sooner you start addressing concerns, the less likely they will continue and interfere with your friendships and your semester. We have several friendly, trained therapists on staff that would be happy to meet with you and help you understand more of what could be going on. And… it’s free to students. 

Please call 262 472-1305 to make an appointment or you can make one in person on the second floor of UHCS (located on the corner of Starin and Prairie Rds near the bookstore). If for any reason you wouldn’t feel comfortable coming to UHCS, please consider speaking to family and friends and perhaps arranging an appointment with your family doctor or a therapist off campus. We’re happy to help with anything along the way.  

Can you do a fasting cholesterol test?
Answer by Ruth Swisher, RN, MS, Director of Health

Lab tests can be ordered by our clinical staff, based on clinical need.  The UHCS lab staff can draw the blood and the test is performed at an outside lab for a fee of $10 for a total (fasting) cholesterol.  Another test our clinical staff can offer is a lipid panel for a cost of $20 giving more information on the type of cholesterol (LDL and HDL) as well as triglycerides. 

If a student's outside  health care provider wishes to order a test on a student's behalf, UHCS offers a process for that to occur.  There would be an additional $10 fee for this "Courtesy Lab" process. 

As always, please the health service at 262-472-1300  call if further information is needed.

Does UWW offer a health insurance plan for full-time students?
Answer by Ruth Swisher, RN, MS, Director of Health

UWW, as a part of the UW-System offers a Student Health Insurance Plan for
All registered undergraduate and special students enrolled for 5 or more credit hours and all graduate students are
eligible and may enroll in the plan on a voluntary basis. All spouses, domestic partners, and dependent children of insured
students are also eligible to enroll.
For details on the plan and when/how to enroll, please visit the UHCS website, or click on:  http://www.uww.edu/uhcs/Insurance.html

What can someone do if their throat hurts after having oral sex? The symptoms are a cough and itchy throat. Should they be concerned and also come in? (11/13)
Answer by Liz Falk, MS, WHNP-BC

It is possible to transmit sexually transmitted infections (STIs) via oral sex, so it would be recommended to seek evaluation by a health care provider. Even if it is not an STI, ongoing symptoms would be important to evaluate.

What is the policy regarding a student who is involved in self-harm but is not suicidal? Can a student feel safe coming to talk to a counselor or do they need to worry about getting sent to a psych word? (10/13)
Answer by Matt Mallin, MSSA, LCSW, Assistant Director, UHCS Counseling Services

Thanks for asking, that's an important question to have clarified... Absolutely a student should feel safe coming to UHCS and speaking with a counselor about self-injurious behavior. It's understood that self injury, such as cutting, can come from a different motivation than suicide, but it still can be a serious issue that may be more healthfully resolved through counseling. While safety is always a priority, hospitalization is very rare and only done in instances of immediate risk of harm related to suicide or other major self care issues. A counselor can tell you more about that if you have more questions. Overall, self-injury is not an uncommon issue among students and several current clients are working on that issue. Usually it's a mechanism for coping with distressing emotions, or a means to "feel something" at all. Please call 262 472-1305 to make an appointment (or if you have more questions), or come to the Ambrose Health Center in person to make an appointment... we'd look forward to helping with this issue. 

Can you become diabetic at any age, and what are the symptoms? (10/13)
Answer by Donene Rowe, MD, Medical Supervisor

You can develop diabetes at any age.  Although it is more common to develop insulin dependent (where the pancreas quits making enough insulin) diabetes in childhood and non-insulin dependent (where the body becomes resistant to the insulin that is made) diabetes later in life,  either type can appear at any age.

The most typical symptoms are the sensation that you are thirsty all the time, that you are hungry all of the time, the need to urinate frequently and sometimes weight loss.

Do you take Walk-in appointments? (4/13)
Answer by Ruth Swisher, Director of Health & Matt Mallin, MSSA, LCSW

For Health Appointments: Health Services uses an appointment system for students seen by doctors and nurse practitioners for routine needs.  This reduces wait times for student patients and increase efficiencies.  Often, there are available appointments for the current and next day.

If a student has a time sensitive issue and no appointment is currently available, (by phone, on-line or in-person), they can ask the health center receptionist for a "Same-Day" appointment.  The staff assigned to Same-day appointments may see the student/patient, based on the schedule and immediacy of need. 

The health center is not an emergency or urgent care facility.  If the concern threatens "life or limb", the Rescue Squad should be called at:  911 for immediate transport to the hospital emergency department.

For Counseling Appointments: Counseling Services primarily operates by asking students to make an appointment (phone 472-1305 or in person) before seeing a counselor. Often, there is little wait time before an appointment can be found that fits your schedule. However, Counseling Services does reserve two appointment slots per day, M-F, at 11am and 2pm, for emergency same day appointments. These are primarily meant to be used for situations involving danger to self or others or other immediate concerns.

Can I refill my birth control prescription at the University Health Center? (10/12)
Answer by Liz Falk, MS, WHNP-BC

If you are interested in obtaining prescription birth control through UHCS, there are two options. You may set up an appointment for a women’s health annual exam ($20). Alternatively, if you’ve had a recent physical exam with another health care provider, bring in copies of your most recent physical exam (within the last year) and Pap test results (if 21 years old+) for a Courtesy Contraceptive Consult visit (no charge for visit). If you have questions about a birth control method, you may be seen for a Contraceptive Concerns visit (no charge).

If you'd like to set up an appointment, you may visit our MyUHCS web portal to set up an appointment online, or contact us by phone at (262) 472-1300.

I get very mad at the smallest things,like a unannounced change in my schedule, I get so mad I feel like I need to hit something or even someone. I don't really know where all this anger is coming from but it sort of scares me and not sure what to do to control please help. (4/11)
Answer by Matt Mallin, LCSW

Thanks for submitting your question. There are many reasons that might contribute to anger outbursts. We’d want to know if this is a recent change in the way you normally react to these situations or if you have had difficulty with anger for a long time. It sounds like from your question that this is more recent. Regardless, often when we have a lot of stress going on in our lives, that stress gets funneled into anger over the things we might not otherwise get upset about. Imagine a pitcher of water filled to the very top… any new stress or frustration gets added to the pitcher and it runs over, no matter how small. Things like the amount of sleep we (don’t) get, our nutrition, sickness, and drug or alcohol use can also contribute to having more difficulty controlling our emotions.

Anger can also be a sign of depression that most people don’t think about. Rather than being necessarily sad or down, sometimes people feel angry and irritable instead. Feeling overwhelmed, not enjoying things you usually enjoy, feeling helpless, suicidal ideation, or wanting to isolate from others are other common symptoms of depression.

Even if we don’t know the source of the anger immediately, we want you to know that there are a lot of goo d strategies for helping take some of that control back. If you are getting to the point where you feel you may injure another person, it’s important that you do your best to attempt to remove yourself from the situation. Even if you are talking to someone at the time, being able to say “I can’t talk about this right now” and going to your room or taking a walk can be an important step in breaking the anger build-up. A counselor might also work with you on finding calming/relaxation strategies that work for you, as well as helping you learn the signals in your body that are cues to anger.

It’s hard feeling like our emotions are in control of us sometimes, and it can be frustrating to deal with it alone. We’d recommend that you consider making an appointment with us. You would meet with a counselor who would be able to do a full assessment of the things that may be contributing to your specific anger issues. From there, you would work to build a plan of intervening with that anger. It can also be nice sometimes to have somebody to speak to about things that maybe we don’t feel as comfortable talking about to friends or family, or to someone who doesn’t have an immediate “side” about a particular issue.
Appointments can be made by calling 472-1305, or in person at the reception desk of the second floor of the Ambrose Health Center (Corner of Prairie and Starin). Thanks again for submitting your question. Good luck and we hope you’ll make an appointment soon… we’re here to help.

Is your STI testing just a test kit, or is it an examination? And also, do you provide medication if needed? (12/10)
Answer by Forrest Bright, DNP, APNP, BC

We will perform a history and physical for an STI examination. We would order the appropriate tests based on our interview and examination. Generally STI testing can be done with a urine specimen (for some bacterial STIs), blood draw (for some viral STIs), and/or swab/culture collection for other STIs. We do not perform "kit" testing. If a client is in need of treatment, we do provide, for a fee, appropriate medication. We may also provide a prescription if that would be a more appropriate choice.

What is the best way to get rid of a wart on your feet? (11/10)
Answer by Donene Rowe, MD, Medical Supervisor

A wart is a viral infection of the cells of the skin. In order to get rid of the wart the cells containing the virus are destroyed. Unfortunately, there is no "best" way, but there are a number of things that can be tried. Over the counter there are wart medications and wart freezing systems that are sometimes helpful. Also covering the wart with duct tape and using a foot file or pumice stone to remove dead skin over the wart can be helpful. Treating the wart in that way may take several weeks to months for the wart to resolve.

In a doctor's office the wart can be frozen or treated with a chemical to destroy the wart. For warts on the bottom of the feet this often takes several treatments, giving the skin 1-2 weeks to heal between treatments.

Finally, most warts will eventually go away on their own, but it can take many months for this to happen.

Does the university have a prepared response if bedbugs are found to be on campus? What assistance will be offered to students?
Answer by Ruth Swisher, Director of Health Services

Yes. If concerns arise over skin lesions possibly related to bed bugs, students are encouraged to seek an appointment with a health care provider. For UHCS appointments, call 262-472-1300 and press option #3. If the student lives on campus, please also contact your hall director.

Lately I have been having difficulty sleeping. I find my heartbeat increasing and I find it very difficult to sleep. Even if I do fall a sleep, it's only for a few hours. What is wrong with me?(10/10)
Answer by Matt Mallin, LCSW, Associate Counselor

It’s difficult to know what exactly could be causing your trouble sleeping without more information. Any number of things can disrupt our sleep at night, from physical illness and diet to anxiety and worry. Worry is frequently mentioned as a leading cause of sleep disruption by students every year. If you find yourself thinking anxiously about the past day, or what you have to do tomorrow, or feeling like your thinking about everything at once, those are common signs of anxiety. The increased heartbeat could also be a sign of anxiety as well, as your body is reacting to the stressor of the worries. The good news is, there are several things that can be done to help you address that anxiety and worry. Make an appointment with Counseling Services to more fully explore what’s going on.

Another good option for you to start with would be to make an appointment at Health Services just to make sure there is no physical illness explanation for your concerns. Remember, there is no charge for an appointment at either Health Services or Counseling Services. Getting good sleep is an important part of our overall health, so please consider these options for yourself.

Do you supply free condoms or them at a cheaper price? I know some clinics do and I was wondering if UHCS does too? (09/10)
Answer by Ruth Swisher, Director of Health Services

Condoms may be purchased at the Health Service Reception office located on the first floor front entry way of the Ambrose building. They may also be purchased during a clinic visit at the health service.

The cost is five condoms for $1.00. We accept cash, check, Purple Points and can also bill to the student's bursar account as a generic health service charge. Costs are covered for students (now includes men as well as women) currently enrolled in the Family Planning Medicaid Waiver Program.

How do you know when warts are gone when they are on your feet and on the palm of your hand area? (09/10)
Answer by Donene Rowe, MD, Medical Supervisor

You can be mostly sure that warts are gone when you can no longer see or feel a hard lump at the site where they had been. You do however, need to give it some time, about a month, to make sure that there is not lingering virus that starts up another wart before you can be even more sure.

Is there couples therapy available at the health center? If so, how much does it cost and what are all the details about how it works? (6-10)
Answer by Matt Mallin, MSSA, LCSW, Associate Counselor

Couples therapy is available at no cost at UHCS (like all forms of counseling at UHCS). The only requirement(s) is that one member of the couple must be a current UW-W student.

One can make an appointment in person at the second floor of the Ambrose Health Center or by calling 262 472-1305. It is important to indicate at the time of making the first appointment that you are seeking couples counseling. When the couple arrives for the first appointment, whichever member of the couple that is the UW-W student, or both if both are actively enrolled, will be asked to fill out basic paperwork.

When that paperwork is completed, you will meet with the counselor together and usually a basic assessment (current issues, risk concerns, family history, mental health/physical health, drug or alcohol use, etc) is completed via discussion with the counselor for each member of the couple. The counselor will also likely ask about goals you have to work on in the relationship, and any areas of concern you have.

From there counseling becomes a collaborative process between the students involved and the counselor, working on different aspects of the relationship and communication needs as best fits what is going on for the couple. Every therapist brings his/her own unique style to therapy, so it is difficult to say exactly what will happen over the course of therapy, and each couple is unique in their needs. All information shared with the therapist is confidential. All sessions are scheduled for 50 minutes, and the couple and the therapist will determine how frequently sessions are held (it is typical to start out meeting once peer week after the assessment has been completed, though this is not set in stone).

Also, in order to promote an environment of fairness and non-bias, if one or both members of the couple have an individual counselor at UHCS, it is important to ask to schedule with a counselor who is not his/her individual therapist. Please call the office and ask to speak with a counselor if you have any more questions regarding couples therapy. Thanks for asking!

I have a pain on my right side. It's around my collarbone and goes down to into my right armpit. It hurts bad when i lift my right arm and it's stiff and painful. I'm not sure if it is just a pulled muscle or what? (02/10)
Answer by Ruth Swisher, Director of Health Services

The best next step is to make an appointment at a clinic (UHCS is an option) unless you feel you need a more immediate medical evaluation via urgent or emergency care (911).

It is not possible to evaluate without having a physical evaluation. There is no cost to be seen at the campus health service. There are minimal fees for lab, medications or other services. Please call if further questions or to make an appointment at 262-472-1300.

Is there a sperm donation site near campus or any surrounding towns where I could make extra money for school?(01/10)
Answer by Ruth Swisher, Director of Health Services

We do not have any listing of sperm donation sites. You may consider consulting with a fertility clinic in the Milwaukee or Madison area to see if they have a referral site.



Last Updated: 02/13/14