January 22, 2010

Health Office and Stuff

What's up with me? I've recently gone on antibiotics to defeat a nasty sinus infection. I exhausted myself so much during the semester that during break I had an on and off respiratory infection (a cold) which became a sinus problem. Yuck! Thank goodness for antibiotics. I'll be well by the time the semester starts (Tuesday).

One problem, though: the doctor told me my blood pressure was high. I suspect it's because of the illness and the cold medications. This has happened to me before. Only weeks ago I had my yearly, and my blood pressure was fine then. But when I get sick and take Sudafed, up the blood pressure goes.

I was advised to get mine re-checked after a few days. I was on campus today to drop off some student paperwork. It's the sort of paperwork that you have to drop off, then return the next day to pick up so you can walk about 10 yards down the hall to hand someone else. No, they cannot inter-office mail it there for you.

Since I was on campus, I called the Health Office to see if they would take my blood pressure. I told them I was an employee.

"No," I was informed. "We're not licensed for that."

Not licensed to take my blood pressure?

"Not licensed to treat employees. Only students."

Oh! I'm a full-time student as well.

"Well that's different! I didn't know you were a student."

That's why I told you.

"We can treat students, but we don't begin treating people until Monday." (When classes start)

Ah. So not actually different in a practical sense.

So I didn't get my blood pressure taken. Why didn't she tell me they were closed right at first? I guess she wanted me to know they don't treat employees. After talking to Ryan later, I recalled that they certainly do treat employees. They give flu shots. Why they can give a flu shot but not take my blood pressure I can't imagine.

They probably make you sign a waiver for the flu shot. I would willingly sign a waiver for the blood pressure measurement. It's the usual only-barely-makes-sense-if-at-all policy of the university.

So, I'll probably just go to the town nurse next week, or stick my arm in one of those machines at the Stop & Shop like I did last time they told me my blood pressure was too high.

Posted by James at January 22, 2010 3:04 PM
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As soon as you mentioned needing a re-take, I immediately thought of your next trip to the grocery store.

Don't you just love bureaucrats?

Posted by: Kitten Herder at January 23, 2010 7:39 AM

Yeah. The rules are probably piled so high that nobody understands them, and few even take the time to tell if they make sense.

I'm sure she was referring to insurance, not licensure, because she actually suggested I go to the nursing department to see if anyone there could take my blood pressure. First of all, I doubt they're set up like a walk-in clinic at a university nursing department and second, school has not yet started, so there is likely not a lot of activity going on there.

Posted by: James at January 23, 2010 10:11 AM

It's extremely silly. Taking a blood pressure measurement is not even a "treatment." I understand that the grocery store machines may not be especially reliable, though.

Psuedoephedrine can definitely raise your blood pressure for a few days. It's much worse than a moderate dose of amphetamine in that respect. My ADD stuff barely nudges my BP, but Original Recipe Sudafed is a different story.

I don't know what the nursing department there is like, but the woman I've been editing for is in a university nursing department, and they actually do take care of some of the stuff that the health office can't or won't. (For a while, the health office there couldn't hand out condoms, so they sent students to the nursing department to get them.)

Posted by: Julie at January 23, 2010 10:50 AM

That's one thing I can get at the health office. There's a big bowl of various colored condoms right next to the door.

Unfortunately, that's not what I needed.

I have to say, they were helpful on the day I got my vaccinations; they did give me a vaccination that I had missed. I don't think that story ever got posted here. It was still a day filled with bureaucracy. And I think my vaccination adventure stories are getting boring and repetitive at this point.

I know that living through them has been boring, repetitive, and predictably stupid.

Posted by: James at January 23, 2010 11:26 AM

At least they didn't have you fill out a three-part form before they told you they couldn't take your blood pressure. There's a bright spot!

Posted by: Patti M. at January 24, 2010 5:24 PM

That's the power of positive thinking for you.

Posted by: James at January 24, 2010 6:20 PM

The unemployment office phone system makes you input a ton of information before informing you that it doesn't have time to take your call. That's sort of similar.

Posted by: Julie at January 24, 2010 11:06 PM

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