You Can Go Where For Testing?!?!

Hi everyone! My name is Brittany, an intern at CHS, who is focusing on research on HIV/AIDS and other STIs.  Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @UNCCampusHealth.  I will tweet periodically and use #brittanyhCHS at the end of my tweets.  If you would like me to specifically answer a question just use the hashtag #brittanyhCHS.

Now that introductions are out of the way, lets jump right on in with a VERY interesting topic.  How many of yall know where to get tested at and how much it costs? If you are like me I really had no idea where to even turn.

I was reading this article about trying to find testing centers near you and that got me to thinking.  I quickly began to realize that even though I have been at UNC for four years, I did not even know where to go to get tested for HIV/AIDS and other STIs.  I had heard about CHS at UNC but I did not realize that I could also go to our local health department!

You can go to this link and it states that you can get tested at the health department in Orange County.  At the health department the test are free and everything is confidential.  You can take the D bus over to the Health Department!

If you would prefer you can come right on in to CHS! Make sure to make an appointment by going to the website and schedule an appointment! In case you are wondering about insurances and charges/costs, this link will help answer all those questions for ya! Just click on this link and the answers that you are looking for will appear!

Online Nurse Advice: UNC Is Number One Once Again

CHS nurse Kimberly Bossian reviews online messages with Eva Erber.

UNC has a long tradition of being first, starting with being the FIRST public university opened in the United States. Well here is another one to add to the list—UNC’s Campus Health Services is the first in the nation to offer Online Nurse Advice, an online service designed to help students make better medical decisions! And get this- the app was even developed by a fellow Tarheel, Masters in Information Science student Oakkar Oakkar.

After learning that nearly 90% of college students look online for health information, only to find sites like WebMD, which don’t provide personal guidance Oakkar and his team at Keona Health began work to develop a better system. The result- Online Nurse Advice! An online app where students can easily get personalized advice from medical professionals. With  accurate, personalized advice students come away with a clearer understanding and action plan. Are their symptoms more or less serious? What kind of treatment should they seek? Where should they seek treatment? Additionally, not only do the the medical professionals providing information tailor their reponses based on symtpoms, but can provide information on resources here at  at UNC! No more shleping through the piles of internet information, o more long waits in the doctor’s office.  just one simple internet app! This is great news considering… Continue reading

All Hail the Plate!

By Toni Hartley, MPH, RD, LDN

As I’m sure most of you have already heard, the Food Guide Pyramid is dead. And it’s about time.

This is not the new USDA plate, but I hope it looks pretty similar. Courtesy of

As I type this, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has not yet unveiled its replacement nutrition education tool, but from what I’ve gathered, it will be shaped like a plate. Divided into quarters, the plate will aim to show Americans how to make a balanced meal by filling one quarter of their plates with non-starchy vegetables, one quarter with fruits, one quarter with high-fiber grains or starchy vegetables and one quarter with protein. Sounds like the Idaho Plate Method to me. Which is great news for those of us who believe balance is best.

As a registered dietitian (colloquially, a nutritionist), I am pleased as punch to say goodbye to embarrassing attempts to explain the Food Guide Pyramid’s baffling recommendations to my patients.  Aim for a certain number of servings of green leafy veggies per week? Rainbow-colored pillars with meats and fruits spilling out of the bottom? Who understood or had time to implement the former pyramid’s teachings? Not this gal.

Don’t get me wrong. I completely understand that creating nutrition guidelines for an intensely diverse population of American eaters is quite an undertaking. (For a more comprehensive look at the history of food and nutrition recommendations in America, check out this chapter from the USDA Economic Research Service’s book America’s Eating Habits: Changes and Consequences.) The good folks who have throughout the years done the nutrition research, translated the findings, and created usable education tools to teach us how to properly nourish ourselves did a bang up job. I am simply hopeful that a meal-based, balance-focused nutrition education tool could be the strongest idea yet.

According to the food blog Obama Foodorama, First Lady Michelle Obama will reveal the new plate tool live this morning at 10:45 a.m. EST at I’ll be tuned in and hoping for the best.

Yield to Heels Day!

Be Aware! Be Safe! Be Considerate! When it comes to pedestrian safety!

Yield to Heels day is Wednesday, April 13 at UNC!

Yield to Heels day serves to educate pedestrians, bicyclists and drivers around campus on the importance of visibility and awareness. The average college student is no stranger to walking or biking. Each day thousands of students at Carolina make the trek across campus, many by foot or bike, to attend classes and to participate in events and activities at UNC. It’s vital to remember safety when traveling from point to point on and around campus.

Implemented by the UNC Department of Public Safety and the UNC Highway Safety Research Center, Yield to Heels is an ongoing pedestrian safety awareness campaign that reminds all campus users to function as a team for a safer campus environment.  The campaign intends to remove myths about traffic and pedestrians and make helpful information about pedestrian safety available to the University community. Continue reading

Winners Never Quit? I Beg to Differ.

I started a recycling program at my old job.  I go around my house turning off lights behind my roommate.  I teach people how to become healthy through diet, exercise, and stress reduction.  I reapply sunscreen and wear stupid hats to the pool to protect my sensitive skin from sunburn and skin cancer.  And then I wash down all of my philanthropy and healthy living with a good old Camel Light.

I have distinct memories of how smoking became a part of my life.  I remember when I was 17 years old and I lit cigarettes for my friend Maggie when she was driving us somewhere (after all, that was the age when we still kept both hands on the wheel!)  I remember saying that I would buy a pack of cigarettes legally on my 18th birthday and then I would quit.  I also remember my first night of college.  My new roommate Abby wasn’t finished getting ready for our tour of campus (and she didn’t know that I smoked) so I told her that I was going to go wait outside.  I started smoking my cigarette, but Abby came outside before I finished.  I told her that I didn’t really smoke and that was the LAST cigarette I was ever going to have.  I’m approaching my 29th birthday and I just quit smoking last month. Continue reading