Continuing to think of our Deac families in Irma’s path

Quick Daily Deac today – and a bit of a mish mash of items – as we have been following Irma today and are quite busy with that.  Re: Irma, I anticipate we will perhaps have one more email message going out to Wake parents and families this afternoon, but it would not come until after our Crisis Management Team has met to see the 4:30 weather update.  We have set up a page here: where we would post any updates over the weekend (if we have them).

In terms of on campus stuff, last night I attended the panel discussion “The Case for Charlottesville.” It was a thoughtful panel and I felt like it bravely discussed some things that are hard to think about and talk about.  Kudos to the Pro Humanitate Institute for putting it on.  If you wish to watch the video from the event, it is online.

2017 President's Ball invitationAn email went out today (I assume to students, faculty and staff) about the President’s Ball, which will be held next weekend as part of Homecoming.  This is a fun event and an opportunity for your Deacs to get dressed up and have a blast dancing the night away. Before you ask me what people wear, it is all over the place.

Finally, I want to close with an issue that we got a lot of questions about over the summer.  There had been a Facebook post floating around about horror stories of college students being injured and parents/family members were not notified.  That has never been my experience at Wake, and I have worked here for 18 years.  So I asked Dr. Cecil Price (’78, MD ’82, P ’14), Director of the Student Health Service, to address this topic.  Dr. Price’s reply is below.

Parents are often concerned that they will not be notified if their student suffers a serious or life-threatening illness or injury because of confidentiality regulations such as HIPAA or FERPA.  It is true that for routine health related problems students of age 18 years or older (in North Carolina) must give their permission before healthcare providers can release health related information to parents.  However, in the case of true emergencies and life threatening health concerns, one of the following actions will occur:

1. Student Health personnel will obtain permission from the student to talk with their parents at the time of transfer (if we haven’t already been in touch with the parents in the course of the evaluation and treatment in the Student Health Service on campus).

2. Student Health personnel routinely notify Campus Life professional staff when a student is referred to the emergency room or hospital for non-life threatening problems (without providing information of the nature of the medical problem).  Campus resources (e.g., Residence Life and Housing, the Chaplain’s Office) are subsequently notified by the Campus Life professional staff member who received this information from the Student Health Service.  The Chaplains work with the student to assist with supporting parents as they follow-up with students at the hospital (this is done in a very timely fashion).

3. In life-threatening situations, informing the family does take on a high priority.  There is usually a conversation between Student Health, personnel in the Office of the Dean of Students, the Chaplain’s office, and the emergency room physician about the nature of the problem and the best way to provide information to parents.  These conversations have always happened in these situations and are handled on a case-by-case basis depending upon the particular circumstances.

Hope that eases your minds a bit.  As we close this Friday, I am thinking of all the families in the way of Irma (I’m looking at you, friends in FL, GA) and those already impacted in the Caribbean island areas.  Please know our continued thoughts and prayers are with you.  Be safe.



Categories: campus life