Campus Health Offers PrEP, Sexual Health Awareness Events
February is Sexual Health Awareness month, and Campus Health has several events planned.
Campus Health is holding several programs and events to inform students of the resources available on campus to promote their sexual health and safety during Sexual Health Awareness Month in February.
One of the most important of these resources is the now wide availability of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) through Campus Health. PrEP involves a prevention strategy and medication to lower your chance of contracting HIV if you are at risk of being exposed to the virus. There are currently three medications approved for use as PrEP — two of which are tablets taken by mouth, and the third is an injectable medication given by a healthcare provider. Studies have shown that PrEP is highly effective for preventing HIV if used as prescribed.
Thomas Sinodis, Campus Health’s pharmacy director, explained that PrEP can be an important resource for anyone sexually active.
“One of the biggest things for students to know about is PrEP may be something they haven’t considered, but it’s something they should consider,” Sinodis said.
PrEP may be something they haven’t considered, but it’s something they should consider.
Throughout February, Campus Health has partnered with several other campus departments and organizations to hold educational events to inform students about ways to protect their sexual health or simply listen and learn.
These include free testing events, tabling, as well as activities such as Sexual Health Game Night, where students can have a good time with their friends but also learn critical information about their sexual health.
Health educator Dan Passonno explained that Campus Health wants students to feel comfortable at these events and have any questions about their sexual health answered. After the success of “Sex in the Dark,” an event co-hosted by the Women’s Center and LGBTQ Pride Center early in the fall semester, Campus Health decided to plan more sexual health events.
“I think it’s just important to educate students on all aspects of their health, including their sexual health,” Passonno said. “Just letting them know what resources are out there to help them with their sexual health, and campus health has quite a few. So we want to make sure that students are aware of them and have access to them.”
I think it’s just important to educate students on all aspects of their health, including their sexual health.
Sinodis said it’s heartening to see initiatives on campus to raise awareness for sexual health, an important but often overlooked topic for college students.
“I think it’s something that we don’t talk about enough,” Sinodis said. “It’s a conversation that any healthcare provider should have with their adolescent and young adult patients. College may be the first time that they’re out on their own. They’re learning who they are and what they’re doing. I think it’s important for you to have as much information as you can to be healthy. Sexual health is part of our overall health.”
Follow @ncsuhealthypack on Instagram to keep up with upcoming programs and initiatives, whether sexual health or any health and wellness topic. Check out the events and programs Campus Health and other organizations are offering in February:
Sexual Health Tabling
Date: Thursday, Feb. 1
Time: 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Location: Stafford Commons
Description: Trivia wheel with sexual health questions and informing students about Campus Health and Wake County Health Department services while giving fun swag items and promoting upcoming programs for the month
Free and Anonymous STI Testing
Date: Thursday, Feb. 1 and 15 (first and third Thursday of each month)
Time: 12-4 p.m.
Location: Campus Health Center
Description: Through a partnership with Wake County Human Services, NC State students and employees are able to utilize free testing with an STI counselor on the first and third Thursday of each month from 12-4 p.m. Results will be typically received in 2-8 days, depending on the sample types being collected.
Take Care of Your Heart
Date: Tuesday, Feb. 6
Time: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Location: Stafford Commons
Description: This event focuses on all areas of heart health, ranging from physical activity and nourishing foods that are good for your heart to taking care of yourself during a break-up and being informed about healthy relationships.
Sexual Health Tabling
Date: Thursday, Feb. 8
Time: 12-1 p.m.
Location: Talley Lobby
Description: Trivia wheel with sexual health questions and informing students about Campus Health and AIDS Alliance services while giving fun swag items and promoting upcoming programs for the month
Swipe Right for Safety
Date: Monday, Feb. 19
Time: 2:30-4 p.m.
Location: Outside Witherspoon Student Center
Description: Come learn more about dating apps so that you can swipe, like, tap and or use safely.
Sexual Health Game Night
Date: Thursday, Feb. 29
Time: 3:00-5 p.m.
Location: Talley Student Union (fourth floor in the Student Leadership and Engagement Suite)
Description: In Collaboration with the LGBTQ Pride Center and University Activities Board, this game night will expand students’ sexual health knowledge with relevant campus and community resources engaging during the event. A sexual health resource fair will kick off the event from 3-3:30 p.m. with games beginning at 3:30 and each game will have an opportunity to win great prizes, including a Stanley Cup!
General HIV/STI Testing Options On Campus
Campus Health offers confidential HIV and STI testing by appointment during normal business hours in both the Primary Care and Gynecology Services clinics. Some tests require samples of bodily fluids (from the anus, throat, urine and/or vagina depending on your risk), and others require a simple blood test. Many results will be available on the same day. However, depending on the sample type, some will take up to 4-5 days. If you receive STI/HIV testing at Campus Health, you should check with your health insurance carrier to determine your out-of-pocket costs. Appointments are also available to help decide if PrEP is right for you. You can schedule an appointment online using the HealthyPack Portal or call us at 919-515-2563.