York Student Health

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Keep up to date with topical issues and important information about health services in York

Meningitis and Septicaemia

Meningitis and Septicaemia

You may have heard of MenC and MenB as causes of meningitis and septicaemia - now there's an increase in MenW infection as well.
Information about meningitis and septicaemia:
  • Meningitis and septicaemia can kill very quickly
  • Cases caused by meningococcal W (MenW) bacteria are increasing in the UK
  • Teenagers and young adults have a higher risk of meningococcal disease
  • The MenACWY vaccine helps to protect against 4 meningococcal groups (A, C, W and Y)
  • Even if you have already had a MenC vaccine you should have a MenACWY vaccine
  • If you're in school years 9 to 13 (aged 13-18 years) you should make sure you don't miss out on your vaccination
  • Look out for the vaccination team visiting your school, or an invitation from your GP - you will be contacted when you are due to be vaccinated
  • If you are starting university for the first time this year, go to your GP to get the vaccination before you go if you miss out register with a GP at uni and get the vaccination there
For more information, speak to your school nurse or doctor, or visit www.nhs.uk/vaccinations, www.meningitis.org or www.meningitisnow.org
Healthwatch York launches a new guide to Mental Health and Wellbeing in York

Healthwatch York launches a new guide to Mental Health and Wellbeing in York

Healthwatch York has launched a new guide to Mental Health and Wellbeing in York.

The guide provides information and advice to help people:

  • Know where to start and how to find help quickly
  • Look after their mental wellbeing
  • Find organisations that can provide advice, help, support and social activities

Si├ón Balsom, Healthwatch York manager, said: “One of the key messages we hear from people is how hard it is to get information when you need it. We wanted to help people get straight to the right support.

“Our guide is unique because of the vision behind it, and how it was developed. It was led by Healthwatch York volunteer Louise Sangwine, who as a former mental health service user knows how vital good information is. She has shaped the directory to answer the questions she had, questions she knows people regularly ask. Louise received support and encouragement from John Brown, another Healthwatch York volunteer, and together they researched and compiled this guide. It has been inspiring to watch their dedication to creating an invaluable resource for us all.”

Copies of the guide are available online to download at http://www.healthwatchyork.co.uk/about-us/hw-york-publications/. You can also collect a paper copy from the Healthwatch York office at 15 Priory Street in York. Louise and John hard at work developing the guide.

For more information about the work of Healthwatch York visit: www.healthwatchyork.co.uk.

Freshers' Flu

Freshers' Flu

On arriving at university or college you will be surrounded by a whole host of new strains of bacteria and virus that you haven’t been exposed to before. Coupled with exhaustion from late nights and first lectures, a take-away diet and high alcohol consumption, your immune system is unlikely to fight everything off without you noticing. Around 90% of students become ill in their first few weeks of university.

Symptoms are most commonly that of a bad cold:
Runny nose
Sore throat
High temperatures

The best treatment will be plenty of rest, water and vitamins through a healthy diet. Symptoms can be relieved by paracetemol but this shouldn’t be taken over a long period of time. Fresher’s Flu will gradually go away but may return at a subsequent point in the year, maybe after the Christmas holidays when students arrive back again.
Vigilance is needed as the symptoms of Meningitis are similar to those of Freshers’ flu, which is why it is such a problem. Many students don’t think they are seriously ill until it’s too late so If meningitis is suspected contact the doctor immediately

Travelling Abroad?

Travelling Abroad?

Anyone intending to travel outside of Northern and Central Europe, Australia and North America should visit a travel medicine clinic or doctor's surgery at least a month before the journey in order to establish if any vaccinations are required.

If you have forgotten or are travelling last minute you can still benefit from being seen up to the day before leaving.

At your appointment you will be asked about destinations, travelling methods and accommodation. This is to make sure the right level of vaccination is given to you.

A course of vaccinations, anti-malarial tablets and a basic medical kit may be prescribed.

If you suffer from a long-term illness, medical advice prior to travel is essential. Medication should be carried in hand luggage, in case your suitcase gets lost, with perhaps another set in your case for safety. You should carry contact details for your doctor and details of your medication.

Take comprehensive travel insurance out as medical care abroad may be expensive. If good quality care is not available, health insurance should cover transport costs home to the UK for treatment. A copy of the insurance certificate should be carried in hand luggage.

If you have returned from abroad and think you may have picked up an illness when you were away, you should make an appointment with your doctor.

Government travel information can be found here.

For travel within the European Economic Area, in addition to travel insurance, you should carry a valid E111 European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This can be used to cover any necessary medical treatment due to either an accident or illness.

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