International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - S6

appointing dedicated international health and safety
experts to oversee their emergency response and risk
management strategies, student health doesn't always
receive as much attention as it should. "Student health
is sometimes an afterthought when there is such an emphasis on security issues and terrorism," says Julie Anne
Friend, director of the Office of Global Safety and Security at Northwestern University. "I definitely believe we
should all be paying attention to those things, but health
issues are the day-to-day hiccups that are more likely to
impact a greater number of students who are abroad."
At Northwestern, the majority of incident reports
that come through Friend's office are healthcarerelated. She says that many of these are requests from
students for a referral to the institution's international
insurance provider.
"When faced with a major health issue-from
maternity, to accidents or other problems requiring hospitalization-all of the normal logistical and emotional
problems are heightened by the distance from their support network," says Keith Clausen, president of Envisage
International, a company that provides international
health insurance.

Taking Responsibility

The Imperative of Preparation
Maria Sweazy, a senior from upstate New York who was
studying in Florence, Italy, had disclosed her diabetes
before leaving, and thought she was prepared to deal
with the disease overseas, but once she landed, she
found that some of the practical realities of life in Florence were very different from her expectations.
"Some of the challenges I faced were the time zone
changes affecting my blood sugars and the difference in
my lifestyle in Florence and my lifestyle I had in Albany,"
she said. "There was a lot of walking in Italy, and I had to
change a lot of my basal rates on my insulin pump to accommodate for the higher levels of activity I was having."
At the small, tight-knit institution she attended in
Florence, she found that no one seemed prepared to
help her deal with the changes. Fortunately she was
able to get some on-point advice from a diabetic nurse
practitioner and veteran traveler who told her how to
compactly pack her bulky supplies and how to make
sure she would have enough insulin to last the trip.
Although an increasing number of institutions are
6  

INTERNATIONAL EDUCATOR N O V.+ D E C .17 * H E A LT H

Kim Howard, director of the Office of International
Education at the University of Vermont, says that the
most common healthcare challenges her office faces
occur when students don't take responsibility for their
own health, when students fail to disclose medical issues
prior to departure, or when students do not seek help at
the first sign of a medical issue.
Friend adds that many healthcare challenges could
be overcome with some advance preparation and making sure students are aware of available resources. "A
lot of the healthcare trouble that students face could
be avoided or at least mitigated by some predeparture
thinking and planning," she adds.
Unless an institution specifically prompts students to
think of healthcare issues, they may not automatically
disclose their conditions. "For a lot of students who have
been managing a healthcare condition for a really long
time, it's such a routine part of their life," says Friend.
"They don't really think about managing the condition
differently in a new environment, where the geography,
the altitude, the food are all different and could impact
their ability to manage their condition in the same way
that they do here [in the United States]. The student
may not put it all together until they get there."



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement

Feature: A Healthy Balance
Feature: Mental Health: Leveraging Resources
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - SCover1
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - SCover2
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - S3
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - Feature: A Healthy Balance
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - S5
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - S6
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - S7
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - S8
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - S9
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - Feature: Mental Health: Leveraging Resources
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - S11
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - S12
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - S13
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - S14
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - SCover3
International Educator - November/December 2017 - Supplement - SCover4
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20190506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20190304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20190102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20181112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20180708gfclone
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20180910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20180708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20180506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20180304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20180102_supp
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20180102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20171112_supp
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_2070910_supp
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20170708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20170506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20170304
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20160910
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20121112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nafsa/ie_20120910
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