The Colonnade (Milledgeville, GA) (02.21.13)
Georgia College’s (GC) Health Services in the spring of 2011 conducted The American College Health Association, National College Health Assessment II survey. At GC, 743 students from various levels responded to the survey. For chlamydia, GC students reported a lower percentage—0.8 percent—of being diagnosed or treated for the disease, compared to the national survey results indicating that 1 percent of all respondents reported receiving chlamydia treatment.
In the last year, GC students reported human papillomavirus (HPV) as the most common STD, with a rate of 1.4 percent, matching the national rate. University Health Educator Rachel Sullivan stated that GC students were aware of the steps to take for HPV prevention, as 41.2 percent of respondents stated that they had received the HPV vaccine, which is a series of shots to prevent the strains of HPV that cause cervical cancer in females. Twenty-one percent of the students reported being tested for HIV. Regarding sexual partners in the last year, GC students responded that 36 percent had no sexual partners, 43 percent had one sexual partner, 9.9 percent had two, 4.6 percent had three, and 5.6 percent had four or more partners. Sullivan warned that, although students may have a low number of sexual partners in their daily lives, when alcohol is introduced, the numbers increase. She noted that 13.4 percent of GC students had unprotected sex in the last 12 months as a result of being under the influence of alcohol.
GC Health Services sponsored Sexual Health Awareness Week February 11–15, to promote the sexual health services and STD prevention efforts that the clinic offers. Students were able to sign the “Milly Love Box” with ways to show love without having sex. Peer educators spoke to students about STD testing, gynecological exams, and many medications for STD treatment. Health Services Clinic Director Alice Loper noted that the clinic treats approximately 30 to 40 STD cases a semester, and the most prevalent STDs are chlamydia and herpes. Students stopping by the Sexual Health Awareness table received a kit that included condoms, lubricant, and a handout with sexual health information.