Going global: Staying healthy at home and abroad

Photo courtesy of Office of International Affairs
Photo courtesy of Office of International Affairs

 

The University of Oregon has a global impact as faculty research beckons them to all parts of the globe and study abroad opportunities abound for students each year. Additionally, the UO’s global community brings together individuals from countries near and far to study on campus. 

With the advantage of opportunity comes the necessity for additional safety awareness, especially when communicable diseases like Ebola or natural disasters such as earthquakes are making headlines.

The Travel Clinic at the University Health Center served more than 1,000 individuals last year whose academic or personal pursuits led them abroad.

“The overall goal of the health center is to keep the campus community healthy, whether in Oregon or abroad,” said Sandy Scheetz, director of clinical services. 

Students, faculty and staff have the benefit of scheduling an informational consultation with the staff at the University Health Center prior to embarking on any trip.

Scheetz adds, “This one-on-one conversation affords the traveler the benefit of the up-to-date knowledge of Health Center employees, and is an important step towards adequate preparation and immunization prior to a trip out of the country.”

UO Travel Clinic staff members are acutely aware of the various complications international travelers may face while abroad. Health Center professionals can provide recommendations on preventative vaccinations, information on natural disasters in the destination, or any communicable diseases and preventative measures to avoid contracting those illnesses. 

The staff is available Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. for appointments to share their knowledge. For more information about the Travel Clinic, or to schedule an appointment, contact 6-2739.

To ensure the health and safety of the university community, “the UO has a robust communicable and infectious disease plan in place,” Scheetz says. “This plan is reviewed and updated regularly with the most current information available, including the recent Ebola outbreak in West Africa.”

While no one associated with the UO has been directly affected by Ebola, the medical professionals at the University Health Center encourage everyone to be informed, take advantage of the available resources through the Travel Clinic and contact the Office of Risk Management to register upcoming trips or purchase travel insurance coverage.

More information about Ebola and the latest travel warnings can be found here.

Travelers are also encouraged to register their trips with the Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy through the State Department’s travel registration website, as well as enroll in the Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program.