School-based health care center opens at West Liberty-Salem

West Liberty-Salem High School. STAFF FILE
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West Liberty-Salem High School. STAFF FILE

Community Health & Wellness Partners (CHWP) has opened a school-based health care center at West Liberty-Salem Local Schools, according to a news release.

The on-site center is staffed by the school nurse, Jennifer Douthwaite, a certified nurse practitioner (CNP), and Beth Wing, a licensed practicing nurse (LPN). Both are employees of CHWP.

Students can visit the center for issues normally handled by the school nurse and for other primary care needs such as regular checkups, prescriptions and appointments to address other health issues, the release stated.

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“Having a health center located on-site at our school is a big step forward in keeping our students healthy. It will minimize the time out of class needed for students to manage any health issues they have,” said Superintendent Kraig Hissong. “This will help our students improve their academic results, and by paying more attention to their health at a time and place that is convenient, we expect them to have better long-term health outcomes as well.”

The center, which opened earlier this month, is not a replacement for anyone’s primary health care provider, but provides an additional place for students and faculty to receive health support and ensure they meet treatment schedules, the release stated. The goal is to decrease the time children are out of class and increase the time they spend learning.

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“School-based health centers can play an important role in helping families manage the physical and mental health needs of their children,” said Tara Bair, president and CEO of CHWP. “We are proud to be partnering with West Liberty-Salem Local Schools to offer this important and needed service for their students and faculty.”

Having a center on-site at school offers a convenient way for parents to have their children seen by a provider, and families have complete control over what services their children receive or do not receive.

CHWP is an independent, nonprofit health center that provides primary care and other wellness services to residents of Logan and surrounding counties.