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​Sharing healthcare advice during Goldsmiths University’s Fresher week

Two female students at Goldsmiths, playing our Use the Right Service Game.jpgEach year, many attend universities in cities foreign to where they grew up, leaving them without the health services they’ve always been used to. Which is why, on the 25 and 26 September we visited Goldsmiths University’s Freshers Week to talk and share health knowledge with their new students. 

We had the opportunity to talk with students from all sorts of background, from across the UK and abroad. Many were new to Lewisham, so they didn’t have access to a GP. Something we could quickly rectify, as we were at the event with our colleagues from the Amersham Vale Practice
Now they had a GP, we ensured they knew how to Use the Right Service. As well as sharing information on other services, such as Pharmacy First and GP Extended Access.

There are a lot pressures that students have to deal with, so looking after their mental health is extremely important. Luckily enough, OASIS services were at the event and they had a wealth of information around dealing with stress, mental wellbeing and their services.

Something that was interesting to find out was that, every university could experience at least one case of meningitis amongst its students within the first term. Students can easily mistake early symptoms as ‘ freshers’ flu’ or hangovers. Meningitis Now were on hand though and they shared a lot of awareness and prevention information and we were pleased to make a useful contact.

Dr Seb Kalwij, GP, Amersham Vale Practice and Clinical Director, Lewisham CCG said:

“It felt great be part of this. For many students this is a big change in their lives and they feel supported knowing that there is a GP practice where they can register and come to in their time of need. I also have spoken to many parents of students and from overseas students. A big issue is getting repeat prescriptions for items prescribed by a specialist abroad and we try our best to make this transition seamless. For students it’s good to see us as clinical staff in a more relaxed and familiar environment and for us it was a great team building experience and it’s always nice to be surrounded and talk to young and enthusiastic students.”