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Watertown, NY: Bringing health care services to public schools

Sept 28, 2017, Watertown (NY) Daily Times: Lessons in good health: Plans to bring medical care to schools will be very beneficial http://www.watertowndailytimes.com/opinion/lessons-in-good-health-plans-to-bring-medical-care-to-schools-will-be-very-beneficial-20170928 New initiatives that have been implemented are providing schoolchildren with greater access to vital health care services. Earlier this month, South Lewis Central School District opened a school-based health center. … “If parents sign up for the service, their children may schedule appointments for physicals, immunizations or allergy shots,” according to a story published Sept. 19 by the Watertown Daily Times. “And clinic staff, upon school nurse referral and parental consent, would also be able to treat them for illnesses and prescribe medication right from the school.” The goal is to bring health care services to the place where children spend the bulk of their day. Transportation to and from the clinic is provided for students at the district’s other schools. The center will bill insurance but waive copays, offering an additional incentive to families. This is a wonderful idea to improve access to medical treatment in an underserved region. We encourage parents in this district to enroll their children and make use of this new resource. This also could serve as a model for school/hospital partnerships in other areas. Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo recently signed legislation introduced by state Assemblywoman Addie A.E. Jenne, D-Theresa, to enhance telehealth services between students and dentists, mental health professionals and physicians. It allows medical personnel to more easily connect online with charter, private and public elementary and secondary schools as well as school-age child care programs and day care centers. … “That program allows a student to be seen by a physician without having to leave the school grounds. A video connection, typically from a school nurse’s office, allows a medical professional to communicate with the student and their guardian, review digital images through instruments such as ear and throat scopes, make a diagnosis and write any necessary prescriptions,” according to information from a news release issued Thursday by Ms. Jenne’s office. …