By Natalie Kilgore
Some stubborn BYU students are more willing to lay in bed sick than swallow their pride and take prescription drugs.
The newest nurse practitioner at the Student Health Center, Linda Hale, said BYU students are reluctant to take medicine for their sickness.
At her previous job, Hale worked as a civilian nurse practitioner contracted with the Navy, she said.
The main difference between her patients on the base and students at BYU is their attitude towards taking medicine to relieve aches and pains, Hale said.
“People here are reluctant to take a pill,” she said. “They’d rather let their bodies heal themselves.”
Emily Hansen, 18, a sophomore from New Orleans, La. majoring in business, said she agrees.
“I never go to the doctor. I’m a big believer that the body heals itself,” she said.
Hansen said she prefers to use forms of treatment other than medicine for helping her body.
“I think drinking water is the cure all. Water and lots of rest,” she said.
It is important to build up the immune system instead of taking drugs to solve the problems for us, Hansen said.
Another reason she does not go to the doctor is due to money, Hansen said.
“Basically, I’m cheap and I don’t want to pay,” she said.
BYU students are becoming more educated about illnesses and more willing to heal naturally without the aid of drugs, said Gus Hoffman, pediatrician at the SHC.
Erin Graham, 20, a junior from Rochester, NY, majoring in family science, said she usually waits a least four days before she goes to the doctor to see if she can beat it herself.
Ben Maxfield, 25, a senior from Boulder, Colo. majoring in history and Spanish teaching, said he hesitates going to the doctor because it is too expensive.
“I definitely go more when I’m at home and my parents will pay for it,” he said.
Although students complain about the co-pay, the SHC charges $10 for students on the health center health plan who have an appointment and $15 for students with their own insurance who have an appointment. The cost of labs and x-rays is additional.
Although students delay going to the SHC, once they see a doctor, they most often heed the doctor’s advice.
Hale said when students do come to the Health Center they are receptive to explanations about their health conditions and suggestions regarding their health.
“The students trust our judgment as doctors and nurse practitioners because they know we come from the same spiritual and moral base as they do,” she said.