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Health Reform Bill Gives a Boost to School-Based Health Centers


Saba Bireda of the Washington, DC based Center for American Progress recently noted that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, promises to make far-reaching changes to our current health care system  - beyond cost. In fact, it is a sign of the growing acknowledgment that integrating health care services in schools DOES matter,  improving academic outcomes. She points out that the community schools strategy implements such a model.

Bireda's article also highlights how community schools that have school based health clinics (SBHC) have improved academic outcomes for their students.  The Children’s Aid Society community schools in New York City, which provide access to five full-service SBHCs, demonstrate higher achievement than other city schools on state math assessments and post higher attendance rates. A recent study of ninth graders at high schools in Seattle with SBHCs found that students who used the centers saw an increase in GPA and attendance.

Sayre High School, a community school with a SBCH (formed in partnership with the Netter Center for Community Partnerships at the University of Pennsylvania), had a graduation rate of 80 percent in 2006-07—significantly higher than the Philadelphia citywide average of 50 percent.

Ms. Bireda sums it best by writing, "Federal policies and programs that support integrated service models such as SBHCs provide the foundation for schools to transition to high-performing, full-service community schools."


Health Reform Bill Gives a Boost to School-Based Health Centers Student in a School Based Health Center
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