By Jillian Baker
The Health and Wellness center recently installed a MindKare Kiosk in the Rohrbach Library just inside the main entrance. The kiosk offers mental health screening, which the university uses as an innovative resource to promote wellness.
According to a KU press release, the kiosk comes as a part of a grant from the Berks County Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities program.
The purpose of implementing the kiosk in a public setting is an effort to reduce the stigma surrounding mental illness on college campuses.
“The purpose of the kiosk is to place it in a high-traffic area. However, students can access the screenings online in the comfort of their room or home if they choose,” said Doroles Hess, director of health and wellness services.
“Statistics show that many individuals have a diagnosable mental health concern but do not reach out for help. Two main reasons for not reaching out for help are fear and stigma. As a community, we can all join together in raising awareness and reducing the stigma surrounding mental health conditions,” said Hess.
“The freestanding electronic touchscreen kiosk is designed for public spaces and serves as a thought provoker, conversation starter and sign of hope for those living with a mental health condition,” said the press release.
The online screening is an anonymous way for students and staff to check their mental health. The kiosk screens for anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder, eating disorders and alcohol use disorders. However, the screening does not provide medical advice and is not intended to be a substitute for professional care.
According to Hess, KU’s Counseling and Psychological Services contact information is available at the kiosk, along with other community resources and hotline numbers.
For more information, go to http://screening.mentalhealthscreening.org/Kutztown.