In an attempt to better serve students, University Health Services has overhauled what many students said was an unusable Web site.
The new site’s features include, but are not limited to, a page of frequently asked questions about managing one’s own health, a most useful page titled “Who to call for what …” and a direct link that enables students to contact their health care providers via a Facebook-like messaging system. A page entitled “Healthwise” also connects the ailing or merely curious to a searchable repository of health information.
“The portal is a simple and straight resource,” Genecin said of the site, adding that he thought it would see more traffic as more and more students discovered its many uses.
When Neil Kalwani ’09 joined the Health Plan Advisory Committee two years ago, he immediately noticed there was a lack of communication between the students and the Yale health administrators. The result was a student Web site that was, as he put it, “really pretty bad.” Among other things, the site was not set up in a way that addressed the needs of students, he said.
“Students need to be able to find out what kind of care they need in as minimally stressful a way as possible,” Kalwani said.
As a student advisor to the Yale Health Plan, Kalwani pushed to overhaul the older site, which had been in place since Fall 2006, and shaped the direction of the new site.
Since most students did not manage their health care before coming to Yale, they require more information than do the other populations the Yale Health Plan covers, Kalwani said. The new site not only provides that information, but does so in such a straightforward manner that even an intoxicated student could use it, he quipped.
Despite the improvements to the site, none of the dozen students interviewed late Monday night had visited it.
“I definitely thought it looked useful when I got the e-mail,” Danny Silk ’11 said, “But I didn’t really have any incentive to check it out.”
Genecin said he realizes that most students probably will not utilize the site until they have a pressing problem, but he nevertheless said he thinks the site will see more traffic than its predecessor.
“Most people aren’t thinking about their health until an issue arises,” he explained.
Apart from the e-mail sent out Friday to the student body, there are no further plans to market the site, which can be accessed at www.yale.edu/uhs/students, Kalwani said.