“It is not the strongest or most intelligent species that survives, but the one most adaptable to change”
June is an extremely important month for men – not only is it National Stroke Month but it is also houses International Men’s Health Week (June 10-16). Stroke is a primary topic in any conversation on men’s health and one I will focus many future articles on, but for this addition of ‘Focus on Men’s Health’ I would like use the Men’s Health Week concept to highlight all the fantastic work and some of the invaluable resources available to men on campus at UBC.
Men’s Health at UBC
First and foremost it has to be said that men’s health is at the forefront of cutting edge research at UBC. Last year (2012) saw the release of ‘The XY factor: the state of boys’ and young men’s health in BC’ a report Funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and Vancouver Coastal Health, about the health indicators for young men in British Columbia. This report (available here) was prepared by our very own UBC School of Nursing and provided a better understanding of the health of males in BC alongside more up-to-date recommendations on areas in need of improvement. So it’s fair to say our top minds are right on top of things!
Find a job you love and never work again…
Rather than list all the findings of this report I would prefer to allow you to read it in your own time. Instead I will focus purely on providing a snapshot for you on all the resources available on campus – and to show you that to be a healthy man at work is extremely achievable at UBC. Here goes….
Services for Men
UBC Men’s Health Research Program – UBC is extremely fortunate to have someone who is regarded as one of the great minds in men’s health, Dr. John Oliffe. Dr Oliffe is an Associate Professor whose research focuses on masculinities as they pertain to men’s health and illness, and addresses diverse issues including depression, prostate cancer, smoking etc. Through his department he operates the Men’s Health Research website. Well worth a look. Click here to visit
Men’s Depression-Help Yourself This UBC run website is an excellent resource for men looking to reach out for help. There is also a library of videos to watch experts and hear their perspectives about men’s depression. One such expert is Dr. Marvin Westwood, a researcher and professor of counseling psychology at UBC. Click here to check it out
Prostate Cancer – Help Yourself – Here is another UBC run website site designed for you to help yourself understand prostate cancer. You can also hear from experts in prostate cancer, listen to the study authors and share your perspectives on the forum. Click here to check it out
UBC Men’s Health Centre – *Coming soon* – This is a proposed new section in the Department of Urologic Sciences. It will provide male-focused information, services and products through a combined program of offline and online diagnosis, treatment and support for men in pursuit of their physical and psycho-socio-sexual health. Watch this space for more information.
Men’s Health Promotion at UBC – Employee health is part of the larger university goal to create an outstanding work environment. Here at UBC under the Health, Wellbeing and Benefits unit there is an active team involved in promoting employee health and making the healthier choice the easier choice for staff and faculty. The health of the male workforce is always an equal priority with UBC’s health promoting team. Click here for information on initiatives, events, workshops, activities, offerings etc. which could help you find a healthier you.
Workplace Health Services (WHS) – Located inside the UBC Health Clinic, WHS offers a range of confidential services to employees in a clinical setting. All recommended services are free of charge. Examples of services are Occupational Health Screenings, Respiratory Protection Programs, Hearing Consultations etc. Click here to see all available services.
Benefits at UBC – UBC prides itself on having excellent benefits .The available plans are designed with the continuing health and well-being of our staff, faculty and their families in mind. The wide ranging benefits plans include: medical services plan coverage, extended health, dental coverage, income replacement program; and many more. Click here for more information
Focus on EFAP
Employee and Family Assistant Program (EFAP) is a confidential counseling service that can help you or your family members with any personal problem, big or small, that affects your family life, your work life or your general wellbeing. Provided for UBC staff and faculty and their eligible dependents, EFAP is self-referred, so no one need know that you are seeking help. Historically EFAP has been mostly used for traditional counseling but at UBC there is an extremely wide range of services available such as:
- Nutrition Assessment Clinics
- Pre-Retirement Planning
- Smoking Cessation Counseling
- Career Development
- Elder and Family Care
- Financial Advisory
- New Parent Outreach
- Childcare and Parenting
- Intervening in Workplace Conflict
Click here for a more detailed list of EFAP services and how to access
Consistently throughout history, and as identified in endless studies, men don’t seek help when they need it. Masculinities are killing us. As the introducing quote from Charles Darwin states, we need to adapt to survive…so ditch trying to be the strongest or most intelligent and strive towards being the most adaptive. Ask for help. Use the above services. Do whatever you need to. Just be sure to do something…Adapt
Final Important Note
June 16th 2013 is Father’s Day. It’s an amazing day for fathers all over the world but a heart wrenching day for any man who has lost a child or is having difficulty accessing his children due to conflict or separation. If you are experiencing any issues whatsoever please don’t try and be the hegemonic strong man – help is always here. See below
- EFAP -24/7 Support-1-800-663-1142
- Crisis Centre BC-604-872-3311
For more information on Men’s Health at UBC or your Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) contact me @ firstname.lastname@example.org or 604-827-3047