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School-Based Health Centers (SBHCs): Enhancing Student Health and Wellness


School-based doctor working in a SBHC.

What is an SBHC, and Why Are They Important?


School-Based Health Centers (SBHCs) are critical components of the healthcare landscape, providing essential health services directly on school campuses. These centers offer a range of services designed to meet the comprehensive health needs of students, from primary care and mental health services to health education and preventive care. SBHCs are important because they improve access to healthcare for children and adolescents, many of whom might otherwise face barriers such as lack of transportation or insurance coverage or family privacy concerns.


Services Provided by SBHCs:


  • Physical exams and immunizations

  • Vision and hearing screenings

  • Mental health counseling

  • Management of chronic conditions (e.g., asthma, diabetes)

  • Health education (nutrition, exercise, substance use prevention, sexual health)


These services are typically funded through federal, state, and local grants and reimbursements from Medicaid and private insurance.


Types of Screening, Need for Referrals and Follow-Up, and Closed-Loop Care


SBHCs may conduct screenings to identify health issues early, ensuring timely referrals and follow-up care. Common screenings include vision and hearing tests, developmental and behavioral assessments, and screenings for chronic conditions such as asthma and diabetes. Mental health screenings, such as those for depression and substance use, are also crucial components of SBHC services.


The need for referrals and follow-up care is an important part of SBHC operations, ensuring that students receive comprehensive and continuous care. A closed-loop care system means that once an issue is identified, the SBHC facilitates appropriate referrals, shares data with the referral resource, follows up on treatment, and ensures that the student's health needs are fully addressed.


How Does CHADIS Help?


CHADIS is a secure, HIPAA, and FERPA-compliant system that enhances SBHCs' effectiveness by providing a comprehensive suite of screening tools and resources that streamline the healthcare process. The screens available through CHADIS include assessments for developmental and behavioral health issues, chronic conditions such as asthma and ADHD, and social drivers of health (SDoH), including housing, food insecurity, and safety issues. These tools help in the early identification and monitoring of health concerns, allowing SBHCs to intervene promptly and effectively.


CHADIS supports closed-loop care by integrating intake and current concern collection, screening and assessments, referrals, online consent and data sharing, and follow-through into one seamless platform. CHADIS enables the collection and sharing of data selectively with other family members while maintaining the student’s privacy. Input from school personnel is also a key benefit for student issues. This integration ensures that all aspects of student health and their impact on learning are monitored and managed efficiently. CHADIS also offers smart templates for conditions such as depression, suicide risk and Safety Plan negotiation, substance use, asthma, ADHD, and SDoH, which aid SBHC staff in guideline-based assessment and management of these conditions, including using student, parent, and educator screen results to complete much of the needed documentation.


Additionally, CHADIS provides educational resources for healthcare providers, students, and parents on private portals. Using CHADIS, SBHCs can ensure that every student receives comprehensive, coordinated, and continuous care, ultimately improving health outcomes and supporting academic success.


Helpful Links and Other Resources


For more information on the role of SBHCs and the resources available through CHADIS, visit the CHADIS SBHC Resources page. Here, you will find detailed information on the services provided by SBHCs and how CHADIS can support these vital health centers in delivering high-quality care to students.

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