The SPOT and School-Based Health Centers
Building on years of successful experience working with youth at The SPOT, Washington University/The SPOT recently received funding to pilot the implementation of a school-based health center in Jennings High School (JSBHC). The creation of the JSBHC will build-on and mirror The SPOT’s effective model of providing integrated multi-disciplinary medical health, behavioral health and social services in coordination with community partner organizations. The national School-Based Health Alliance estimates that there are currently about 2,000 SBHCs in the United States. The JSBHC will be one of the first comprehensive SBHC program in the St. Louis, MO area.
Through funding from the St. Louis County Children’s Service Fund, the initial planning/development stages of the JSBHC project began in September 2014, with implementation of direct non-medical services (health education, case management, mental health and substance abuse screening/counseling) being projected for March 2015. Currently, efforts are occurring to secure financial support to begin providing medical services at the JSBHC by the beginning of the 2015-2016 academic year.
What is a school-based health center?
- Support the School: The school-based health center is built upon mutual respect and collaboration between the school and the health provider to promote the health and educational success of school-aged children.
- Respond to the Community: The school-based health center is developed and operates based on continual assessment of local assets and needs.
- Focus on the Student: Services involve students as responsible participants in their health care, encourage the role of parents and other family members, and are accessible, confidential, culturally sensitive, and developmentally appropriate.
- Deliver Comprehensive Care: An interdisciplinary team provides access to high quality comprehensive physical and mental health services emphasizing prevention and early intervention.
- Advance Health Promotion Activities: The school-based health center takes advantage of its location to advance effective health promotion activities to students and community.
- Implement Effective Systems: Administrative and clinical systems are designed to support effective delivery of services incorporating accountability mechanisms and performance improvement practices.
- Provide Leadership in Adolescent and Child Health: The school-based health center model provides unique opportunities to increase expertise in adolescent and child health, and to inform and influence policy and practice.
What services can SBHC provide?
School-based health center services across the country have included comprehensive well-child and well-adolescent exams, immunizations, diagnosis and treatment of illness or injury, management of chronic diseases such as asthma and diabetes, mental health assessment and treatment, health education, promotion and disease prevention programs, as well as basic dental services. The SPOT is conducting a needs assessment process to determine what health-related issues the students of Jennings High School (and their families) are experiencing and what services The SPOT will be able to provide through the SBHC in an effort to address those identified needs.
Questions regarding The SPOT’s SBHC at Jennings High School can be directed to:
Chardial Samuel, LCSW
SBHC Coordinator/Health Educator