SCHOOL-BASED HEALTH CENTER
The School-Based Health Center (SBHC) Program provides children with access to critical services to keep them healthy, in school, and ready to learn.
SBHC medical providers, medical assistants and mental health providers offer an array of primary and mental health services, including well-child checks and sports physicals, immunizations, treatment for minor injuries, depression and substance abuse screening, and mental health counseling.
Staff also provide prevention education to help young people take responsibility for their health and encourage teachers and parents to support healthy outcomes.
In 2011, Virginia Garcia established a new service delivery model for reaching underserved youth by providing oral health care to children at our SBHCs. Through this program, children receive screenings, along with oral health-related nutrition education, fluoride varnishes and referrals for dental services from the SBHC. Periodically, expanded practice dental hygienist provide preventive care at the SBHC.
The SBHCs help families overcome various barriers to accessing care, such as:
- Lack of transportation: Services are provided at schools to eliminate the need for a separate trip to a doctor’s office or clinic.
- Affordability: SBHCs provide care at a reduced fee and accept all forms of insurance, including Medicaid. No one is turned away for inability to pay. Staff also enroll eligible uninsured kids in public insurance programs, such as Healthy Kids.
- Language: SBHCs provide culturally competent services in patients’ own languages. Most staff are bilingual (English/Spanish) and interpreters are provided as needed.
The co-location of SBHCs on school campuses provides expanded access to services for kids in a safe, familiar environment. They can access primary and mental health care, and oral health services, all in one place with staff that they know and respect.