UBC Reports | Vol. 47 | No. 08 | April
Beauty is in the eye of long-serving staff
They came for the spirit of the place and add their own
She's the 'heart and soul'
Students away from home get an education in health
by Bruce Mason staff writer
"Kathy Brand is the heart and soul of this place," says Dr. Patricia
Mirwaldt, director of Student Health Services, to which UBC students
make 35,000 visits each year.
Brand, an administrative clerk, is flattered by the compliment
from the sixth
director under whom she has served.
"I love my job, mainly because of the team I work with."
"There is a good feeling here," she adds. "We `re providing a service which
people really need and appreciate and most directors, doctors, nurses and
support staff leave only because they're retiring."
Much has changed since Brand was hired Aug. 12, 1976.
"I was a Clerk 1, the monthly salary was $760 and we were in the Wesbrook
building," she recalls.
The department now consists of full- and part-time staff: 11
physicians, nine psychiatrists, four nurses and seven support
Brand, who has worked in every clerical position in Student Health Services,
says the clinic has been virtually paperless since 1985.
That made a big difference in storage of records and statistics. Two
years ago a highly confidential computer system was developed to include such
functions as scheduling scanning and lab reports.
"The biggest change is our basic approach," she says. "We used to take care of
the injured and ill and still do. But we are much more involved in education
and prevention. For example, we have a wellness co-ordinator and we're adding
an expert on eating disorders."
She points out that many of the clinic's clients are away from
home and their
family doctor and want to consult with someone about their health. Students
are preparing for the outside world and a visit to the clinic is a
"Students are wonderful and very interesting, but high school
them to take responsibility for their health," says Brand. "That's the best
part of my job, but don't get me wrong, I really do enjoy my
holidays as well."