San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas
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April 20th, 2009
Family planning resources available for Texas State students.

By ALEXANDRIA AEBI
News Reporter

The availability of information and sexual health services offered in San Marcos for Texas State University students is on the rise.

According to Ashlee Dozier, the health education coordinator at the Student Health Center, students living in San Marcos have a wide variety of resources available to them in regards to sexual health.

The Student Health Center offers sexually-transmitted infection (STI) testing for chlamydia, gonorrhea, human papillomavirus virus (HPV), herpes, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), syphilis and hepatitis.

“Our pharmacy carries a large variety of birth control options including oral contraceptives, the NuvaRing, the patch and condoms,” Dozier said. “Our women’s clinic provides Pap smears, contraceptive counseling, Depo-Provera birth control injection and testing for yeast infections and bacterial vaginosis. We also perform pregnancy tests and counseling.”

Dozier also offers various presentations to classes, student organizations and residence halls.

“Current presentations include: Sex, Lies, and Chocolate (An overview of sexual health and abounding related myths), Contraception 101 (An in depth look at currently available contraception methods), STIQ (A way to test your IQ on sexually transmitted infections) and Healthy Sexual Relationships,” Dozier said.

Texas State University also offers a human sexuality course that is available to all students.

According to Shirley Ogletree, interim chair of the psychology department at Texas State University, this course is fairly new to Texas State.

“When I first came to Texas State University in 1977, human sexuality was not offered,” Ogletree said. “It was too controversial.”

The human sexuality class is now one of the most popular psychology courses offered.

“In the fall, human sexuality is taught in the teaching theater and in the spring it is usually an 80 student class,” Ogletree said. “Both sessions are always close to full.”

According to Amy Meeks, senior lecturer and human sexuality professor, this class helps all students who take it.

“I want to encourage all students to take a human sexuality class,” Meeks said. “The information you learn in that class can make an enormous difference in your life.”

Another resource available for Texas State University students is the Family Planning Center.

According to Vicki Taylor, office manager of the Family Planning Center, there is a wide variety of services offered for students.

“The Family Planning Center is very convenient for students because we offer very affordable birth control and we are able to prescribe birth control without an exam,” Taylor said.

“This makes it easier for students who need prescriptions, but do not want their parents to know for one reason or another.”

According to Taylor, the Family Planning Center also offers STI testing by a urine sample, rather than a probe, which can be particularly uncomfortable for males.

“The rates are typically a little lower than those of the Student Health Center. We also have student discounts and same day appointment availability,” Taylor said.

According to Taylor, April is STD awareness month and the Family Planning Center is offering STD testing at a special rate. The office visit costs $42, but the lab fees and medications are free. This service is available because of a grant program.

The Family Planning Center and the Student Health Center do not offer abortion services, but can refer patients to other facilities.

The Student Health Center can be contacted at (512) 245-2161. The Family Planning Center can be contacted at (512) 392-5810.

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