Jones-Wheat, West Bainbridge receive $30,000 TeleHealth grants

Published 10:34 pm Friday, September 19, 2014

Superintendent Dr. Fred Rayfield, along with Memorial Hospital and Manor, announced two telemedicine grants, each $30,000, for Jones-Wheat Elementary and West Bainbridge Elementary.

“We can begin to have our students that are unable to receive a doctor’s attention and doctor’s treatment, for whatever circumstances that might have come their way — we’ll be able to provide them with that that through our school nurses’ offices,” Rayfield said, “and we will have regular interactions with physicians like Dr. Winston Price (of Memorial Pediatrics). We are extremely excited.”

The grant provides a means for each school to develop a TeleHealth center on campus. TeleHealth utilizes telecommunications and related technology to support patient care and health education. TeleHealth boasts of its ability to increase access to healthcare.

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According to a news release from Memorial Hospital and Manor, this will allow school nurses to better address the needs of students, especially those who may not receive medical attention elsewhere.

“The purpose of the school based health centers are to:

•Provide primary medical care and behavioral health services at each site.

•Offer health services in the school building or on campus in a space that is adequate for
service provision and that ensures confidentiality.

•Utilize outreach activities to enroll students and encourage use of the school-based
telehealth center(s) throughout the school year.

•Integrate health promotion efforts with the school community served by the school-
based telehealth center(s).

•Maintain a Community Advisory Council that has clearly-defined roles in
guiding sustainability efforts, monitoring quality improvement and lending expertise
in helping to promote the school-based health center(s) to the broader community.

•Target services to student populations with documented needs such as low-income status, lack of access to primary care, uninsured or underinsured, and/or evidence of
poor health status.

•Link with community resources for services not provided onsite.
The health center in each school will have access to the primary care provider via telehealth links, or direct phone access to our pediatric clinic and emergency department staff.”

“As you all know, a healthy body creates a healthy mind and healthy learning,” Price said.

“This is great news that we are excited to share with the community. This is another way that we can provide better access to health care for our community. We know that this partnership will be a success, and look forward to working with the Decatur County Board of Education to provide additional care for the children of Decatur County,” said Billy Walker, CEO of Memorial Hospital and Manor.