Sexual health resources, contraceptives available to students

Victoria Wasiloski, Contributing Writer

At Eastern, students can get contraceptives at the Health Services Medical Clinic and at the Health Education Resource Center.

According to Eastern’s website, oral contraceptives start at $25 per cycle, but the Medical Clinic does not stock all brands.

Personal items, such as first aid supplies, feminine supplies, thermometers, condoms and pregnancy tests, are available for purchase at the pharmacy, according to the website.

In addition, the HERC provides free presentations and educational open sessions about safe sex for students to attend, educating the student body about what contraceptives are and how to stay healthy while sexually active.

According to Eastern’s website, the HERC is “a resource for students, faculty and staff by providing programs, campaigns, interventions and one-on-one consultations regarding health-related topics.”

At Eastern, HERC offers Rubber Lovers presentations that go over safe sex and pregnancy prevention with students.

Gage Dailey, a health promotion coordinator for HERC, said the department offers something called “Rubber Lovers” every semester. These are open sessions students can attend to learn about what different types of contraceptives exist.

“The whole point of these presentations is not for telling the students ‘do not have sex,’ but how to have safer sexual experiences,” he said.

In these sessions, HERC coordinators show how to put on condoms and emphasize the importance of STI testing, he said.

“I enjoy giving the presentations because it is a really important topic. Most high schools just teach abstinence and do not teach directly about STDs and STIs, so this presentation is awesome for students to get their questions answered,” Dailey said.

While condoms and other barrier methods are not 100 percent effective contraceptives, they are the best available protection when used correctly, besides abstinence, he said.

If an individual feels intimidated in a group setting to ask questions relating safe sex and pregnancy prevention, HERC has one-on-one consultations for individuals that make that individual feel more comfortable in asking questions about safe sex and pregnancy prevention, he said.

Students can get tested for STIs at Health Services.

The Medical Clinic is located in the Health and Counseling Services Building. Its phone number is 217-581-3013.

The HERC is located at the Booth House. Its phone number is 217-581-7786.

Logan Raschke contributed to this article.

Victoria Wasiloski can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].