Hospital's "Walk-In Care for Schools" initiative treated nearly 2,800 students, staff in Ashland Ind., Fairview Ind., Boyd Co., Carter Co. schools in first seven months

Daily Independent, Ashland, June 6, 2017

Schools have benefited from KDMC’s Walk-In Care for Schools program

by Rachel Adkins

Kayla Murphy said local schools have benefited from King’s Daughters Medical Center Walk-In Care for Schools program on Monday.

The program brings a dedicated medical provider to school systems. The initiative is designed to promote physical, mental, social and emotional health for students, families, faculty and staff resulting in fewer missed school/work days, faster access to care, better management of chronic diseases and improved academic performance.

Ashland, Boyd County and Fairview Independent school districts and Carter County schools benefit from the program.

Since Dec. 1 of last year, Murphy, KDMC school health manager, said the program received 4,136 patient packets from guardians and had 1,378 sick visits from children. The amount of sick visits from staff was almost identical with 1,365 visits.

“Hopefully what we’re doing with this is we’re actually seeing maybe that they’re not having to get as many subs,” Murphy told the Ashland Rotary Club.

She explained one of the reason’s the hospital started the program was to lower the amount of emergency room visits made. Just referring to KDMC’s data, Murphy used the month of March as an example of the progress made, saying there were only 311 ER pediatric visits visits this year compared to 497 in 2016 before the program was available in the schools.

She added that 1,632 flu vaccinations this year were given overall in addition to 68 HPV vaccines, which were given in a series of three shots.

Murphy touched on the trends she has noticed with the program, saying a lot of the kids do not have a primary care provider and that many need glasses and could not afford them. In addition, she said there is a lack of transportation among guardians.

Summit Elementary School Principal Ben Maynard also spoke on the program at the meeting, saying it has allowed the school to keep more kids in the classroom and provide information to guardians about health care.

“It’s allowed us to educate families on options and services that are available, which ultimately, as we all hope, is going to further their education which is probably the greatest asset that they could ever ever have,” he said.

Murphy said upcoming additions in the program would include providing a cooking class with the schools and trying to offer an online patient packet form this upcoming school year.

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