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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Jan. 31, 1975)
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Health Aide Program
by Mary Kay Roth
You're hit by cold or flu germs and mother isn't around to offer
her tender loving care? Enter-your local health aide, armed with
first aid kit and general first aid knowledge.
Although the Health Aide Program lias been at UNL for more
than 15 years, it is being continually improved, agreed Particia
Kampfe and Celeste Knipmeyer, two community health nurses.
Until mid-March they will be interviewing students for next
year's health aide positions.
Health aides are salaried part-time workers, serving as
communication links between the University Health Center and
UNL students. The entire Health Aide Program depends on the
quality of health aides, Knipmeyer said, and they are getting better
When the Health Aide Program was begun in 1957, student
assistants volunteered to double as health aides in order to fight a
flu epidemic. Now, 145 students-one for each floor of every
residence hall, one for each Greek house and at least one for each
student co-op-are paid $5 weekly.
Interested schools from across the nation have sent letters and
representatives to UNL to observe the program, Knipmeyer said.
Health aides must have at least sophomore standing, but no
specific major is required.
Serve for one year
Each health aide can serve only one year, and at the end of the
term must submit two names to fill the position the following year.
The aides are then interviewed and chosen on the basis of effective
communication skills, leadership and possibly grade point average
When hired, they sign what she termed "conscience"
commitment contracts, so they know the health center's
Following an eight-hour crash course in first-aid, each of the
health aides must take an "on the job training" UNL class, "Peer
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first semester" Knipmeyer explained, "and move on to more
unusual complaints second semester."
Three to 10 cases
Each health aide handles about three to 10 cases per week,
Knipmeyer estimated, but during the flu season the load is up. She
said the most common complaints are colds, sore throats and
Kampfe, a former health aide, agreed. She said most students
come to the health aides with "the minor physical and emotional
concerns of college students."
If symptoms of a more serious disease are present, Kampfe said,
the health aides refer the student to a doctor or the University
She stressed that all medication given by health aides is
Advice from coordinators
If a health aide has a problem and doesn't know how to handle
a situation, he or the can go to one of 11 coordinators for advice.
Kampfe said the coordinating system began three years ago,
when the Health Aide Program was becoming too large for a few
people to handle.
Coordinators are students and former health aides who earn $10
per week and supervise additional activities.
Each health aide must submit a health tip and participate in a
health education program organized by the coordinators, Kampfe
"It's a difficult job motivating and teaching your own peers,"
Kampfe said, "but you gain Lorn the experience.
friday, january 31, 1975
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