A new health care center is expected to open this fall at Rogers High School to serve students--and eventually, staff, students’ families, and the surrounding neighborhoods.
Oakland, California-based health cooperative Kaiser Permanente selected Rogers and Spokane-based Community Health Association of Spokane as partners on the first school-based health center in Eastern Washington.
Kelly Stanford, Spokane-based vice president of clinical operations and market integration at Kaiser Permanente, says the organization will provide $590,000 to fund the clinic over the next three years.
Such clinics are part of what the health cooperative refers to as its Thriving Schools initiative, she says.
“This was a very focused approach around providing access to health care, mental health care, and services within the schools themselves,” Stanford says.
Starting Nov. 1, CHAS will provide medical, dental, and behavioral health services to the 1,500 students who attend Rogers.
Stanford says the health center eventually will serve Rogers staff, families of students, and residents of the surrounding neighborhoods after school hours.
Kaiser Permanente put out a request for proposals for a school-based health center earlier this year and was struck by the application Rogers submitted, Stanford says.
“One of the strongest components of their application was the strong partnership between the community provider, Rogers, and the neighborhoods,” Stanford says.
Six surrounding neighborhoods raised $165,000 to fund remodeling of part of the school to accommodate the health center.
“We felt that … demonstrates strong collaboration and an alignment in the community, which always means it’s going to be much more successful in the future,” Stanford says.
A representative of CHAS didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Fewer than 2% of Washington schools have a health center on campus, according to Kaiser Permanente; most of those are concentrated in the Puget Sound area.
Kaiser Permanente’s administrative center in Spokane is located at 5615 W. Sunset Highway.
As of Oct. 1, 2018, the organization had nearly 66,000 enrollees in Eastern Washington.
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