It may be no surprise that many UOS students are not aware of the medical treatment available at the UOS Health Center, located on the second floor of Student Hall. The center serves to offer UOS students equality in medical treatment with a comfortable environment, and to contribute to a healthier campus life overall. It is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and there are two full-time nurses on station. Two doctors, one from the department of family medicine and the other from the department of surgery at the Seoul Metropolitan Dongbu Hospital, take alternate weekly shifts and provide full diagnoses when needed.
Although the Health Center provides students with analysis of their symptoms and can issue prescriptions, it cannot offer professional treatment due to a lack of qualified staff ? a shortcoming compared to health centers at other universities, some of which have hospitals on campus. Yet, conditions at the UOS Health Center are similar to those at universities throughout Korea. Sogang University, for example, employs only one nurse at its health center. When interviewed, the nurse explained, “Like Sogang University and the UOS, which do not have their own medical colleges, nearly half of all universities in Korea have few or no professional doctors to care for students. Therefore, we prescribe students basic medicines when they visit and refer them to hospitals depending on severity of symptoms or injuries.”
In contrast, other universities that have medical colleges provide comprehensive medical services to students. The Sungkyunkwan University Health Center, for example, collaborates with Samsung Medical Center so that doctors from various fields, including dentistry, psychiatry, and internal medicine come to campus regularly.
A lack of advertising for the Health Center may be one reason why many students do not know that the Center exists. Or, many students might know that it exists, but are not aware that they can receive medical care from doctors. Information about the Center’s operations is posted outside the center and on the UOS webpage, but this information does not clearly indicate when doctors are available. This lack of clarity may confuse students and leave them unsatisfied with the medical care.
The UOS Health Center is a friendly, comfortable place with qualified staff ready to assist students and keep the campus healthy. However, it does not draw students’ attention to take full advantage of its services. To improve quality and satisfaction with services, more advertising and professional medical staff are needed.