Steps to Take When Facing a Medical Emergency on College
BY KIMBERLY EVANS
One of the aspects that many college students, and even their parents for that matter, worry about is a medical emergency. This is a misplaced fear because most medical emergencies are manageable if you’re prepared and know how to handle these emergencies.
This guide will take you through some of the common medical emergencies you’re likely to face in college and the ways and means to handle them.
Know the emergency numbers
Every college will have a volunteer-driven emergency medical service comprising of student volunteers who are well-trained in first-response emergency procedures. Many of these volunteers will also have formal training or certificate as First Responders.
This service will be available 24 X 7, so you can rest assured that help is on hand if you ever face a medical emergency. Make sure you have the contact number of this service and know whom to talk to. Ideally, save this number on your phone and paste it on prominent places in your dorm/room, so others can access it for you.
Do your research
If you’re moving to a new city for college, take time to do some research about the medical facilities available in your neighborhood. Talk to different doctors and identify a primary care physician. If you can get recommendations from a doctor in your home city, that will work too. Reach out to this doctor in case of an emergency, as he/she can guide you on what needs to be done.
Get the emergency numbers
Make a list of the closest pharmacy, hospital, emergency room and urgent care clinics around your college. Save all these numbers on your phone and put them on your speed dial.
In addition, paste these numbers on your fridge and or any other prominent place so your dorm roommates and others can see it as well.
Have a first-aid kit
Build a first aid kit for yourself in your dorm room. Keep things that are essential for your medical needs. For example, if you are prone to wheezing often, have a wheezing spray as a part of your medical kit. Besides such specific items, have a few bandages, antiseptic creams, and a few over-the-counter medicines for common conditions such as cold and fever.
There are many websites that give you comprehensive information on what should go into your emergency first-aid box. Read through those listings and pick the ones that you believe you’ll need in an emergency.
But remember, a first-aid kit is never a substitute for medical help in an emergency. It is just something that can save you until you get help.
Build a social circle
One of the first things that help you when you go to college is a good social network. While this doesn’t happen overnight, you need to start taking concrete steps towards building a social circle.
Tell your closest friends and roommates about any specific medical condition you may have and tell them what they should do in case of a medical emergency. They should be able to help you in the event of an emergency.
If you have a local guardian, make sure you inform them as well, so they can be prepared. Share the contact number of this guardian with your friends and roommates and vice-versa, so everyone knows whom to contact in the event of an emergency.
Routine medical checkup
College is a busy time and you’ll always have more work than time. But that is no excuse to neglect your health. Make sure you have routine medical checkups and stay on top of your health, especially if you’re suffering from any specific medical condition.
Know when to contact your lawyer
Sometimes, medical emergencies will require the assistance of a lawyer, especially if you think it is because of the negligence of any company or individual. In such a case, make sure to pick a local lawyer. For example, if your college is in the city of Philadelphia, pick an experienced Philadelphia personal injury lawyer, as this will make communication and interactions easy.
Thus, these are some of the steps you can take to handle a possible medical emergency that may come your way in college.
Kimberly Evans is a writer, traveler and Internet chatter. She covers stories about businesses and lives that inspire her. Email: KimberlyEvansPen@gmail.com