Students have a right to know what illnesses are prevalent on campus. Until TCU statistics are released, students can’t receive accurate facts.Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Don Mills recently sent about 3,200 students who make up a random sample an e-mail encouraging them to participate in the National College Health Assessment Web Survey. Mills said in the message that the survey will be used to assess health behaviors of students in order for the university to develop and improve health services and programs on campus.
Marilyn Hallam, assistant to the director of health services, said the Health Center can’t release health-related statistics, such as the number of students treated at the Health Center each year for sexually transmitted diseases, because of confidentiality issues. She said students can receive such statistics at the Fort Worth Public Health Center.
However, statistics from the Fort Worth health center can’t accurately assess the health statistics of TCU students; its statistics cover all residents of Fort Worth who visit the center.
The questions cover issues ranging from sexual behavior and health to illegal use of substances. Although some of the questions may be uncomfortable to answer, Mills assures students that names and e-mail addresses cannot be linked to personal information on the survey, according to the e-mail.
Laura Crawley, assistant dean of campus life for health promotion and principle investigator for the survey, said the health-planning for campus the next three to five years will come from the results of this survey.
She said students routinely ask her quantitative questions regarding sexual health, eating disorders, sleep and stress that she can’t answer based on TCU statistics because they don’t exist. She also said changes could be made to the Health Center based on the survey.
Check your e-mail and fill out the survey for the betterment of students’ health and furtherance of information.
Associate editor Leslie Honey for the editorial board.