Beaumont Health - School Wellness Program at Harry S. Truman High School

The overarching goal of the School Wellness Program at Harry S. Truman High School is to help students stay in school, thus improving chances for academic success. Short-term goals include provision of nursing services, mental health crisis counseling and prevention education sessions that affect health, attitudes, behaviors and coping skills necessary to make healthy choices and thrive. The program is situated on-site at Harry S. Truman High School to "reach kids where they are." Dedicated staff includes registered nurses and LMSW counselors, who provide all services and are available during all school hours. Services are free of charge.

What is it?

The overarching goal of the School Wellness Program at Harry S. Truman High School is to help students stay in school, thus improving chances for academic success. Short-term goals include provision of nursing services, mental health crisis counseling and prevention education sessions that affect health, attitudes, behaviors and coping skills necessary to make healthy choices and thrive. The program is situated on-site at Harry S. Truman High School to “reach kids where they are.” Dedicated staff includes registered nurses and LMSW counselors, who provide all services and are available during all school hours. Services are free of charge.

Who is it for?

Students who attend Harry S. Truman High School, most of whom live in a medically underserved area with large numbers of uninsured and Medicaid patients. Many students live below the poverty level, and other prohibitive issues limit access to care.

Why do they do it?

Years of data underscore the need for health, wellness and prevention programming in Taylor, a community disproportionately affected by poverty, crime, violence and substance abuse. Most students attending Harry S. Truman High School (HST) live in the southwest portion of Taylor, an area deemed medically underserved by the federal government. With low test scores and graduation rates, HST was identified as one of the state’s failing schools in 2010. Furthermore, the Michigan Profile for Healthy Youth survey, (used to assess student health needs), revealed staggering rates for availability and use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs. An overwhelming 18.3 percent of students reported carrying a weapon to school during the preceding 30 days. Rates for obesity and diabetes were higher than state averages, and sadly, 38 percent of students reported feeling hopeless (to the extent of stopping normal daily activities) for more than two weeks in a row. Nearly 13 percent of those students attempted suicide.

Impact

Since opening in November 2011, the School Wellness Program (SWP) has realized 9,305 medical visits serving 1,364 unduplicated students, and 3,205 mental health visits serving 694 unduplicated students. Outcomes suggest that the SWP is effectively addressing its overarching goal to help students stay in school, with 97 percent of SWP visits resulting in the student returning to class and staying in school. Recent results have met or surpassed anticipated outcomes for 45 out of 46 metrics related to SWP primary care; mental health; alcohol, tobacco and other drugs; and Medicaid outreach objectives. Ninety-five percent of students utilizing the SWP clinic completed BMI screening; those with BMI over the 85th percentile receive individual nutrition counseling. Ninety-four percent of students completed health risk assessments with counseling and referrals as indicated. One hundred percent of students with known chronic disease are individually educated on disease management, and the SWP has administered 858 vaccinations to date.

Contact: Betty Priskorn
Vice President, Community Health & Outreach
Telephone: 313-586-5492
Email: betty.priskorn@beaumont.org

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