OU-Tulsa School-Based Clinics Supported by BCBS
HAPPY STUDENTS: Joined by students from Rosa Parks Elementary, Dr. Gerry Clancy, left, president of OU-Tulsa, accepts a check for $100,000 to support the OU School of Community Medicine School-Based Clinics from Bert Marshall, center, president of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma and Dr. Joseph Cunningham, chief medical officer of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma. Rosa Parks Elementary School has a school-based clinic that provides clinic services to immediate family members living in the student’s home. Physicians at all of the OU school-based clinics see more than 5,800 patient visits each year.
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma leaders announced recently a $100,000 grant to the OU School of Community Medicine to provide direct patient care services to children and their families, regardless of insurance coverage or status, at the OU school-based clinics.
The OU School of Community Medicine currently runs clinics at Roy Clark Elementary and Rosa Parks Elementary in the Union Public Schools district, Educare, and the Sand Springs Early Childhood Education Center. The clinics are open to any student in the schools where the clinics are located. Clinic services are available to immediate family members living in the student’s home. If a student has no insurance, an outreach worker will work with the family in order to connect them to appropriate health care programs, such as SoonerCare. The OU School of Community Medicine school-based clinics impact 5,800 patient visits each year.
The grant to the OU School of Community Medicine provides direct patient care services to children and their families, regardless of insurance coverage or status, at the OU school-based clinics.
“We believe that good health is at the core of a good life,” says Bert Marshall, President of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma. “These programs are crucial to improving our state’s health statistics and ensuring that our next generation establishes healthy habits for life.” OU school-based clinics offer health care and social work services year-round during normal business hours. Health care services provided are the same as those offered in a traditional primary care setting, including preventive medicine, such as immunizations, and “sick” child and adult appointments. In addition, a social worker assists the family in connecting them to needed resources in the community, such as rental and utility assistance.
The OU school-based clinic model is different from a traditional school clinic. A corner stone of the OU model is the presence of a full-time physician who works with the students and their families year round. The physician is a fixture within the school setting, which enables the doctors to connect with their patients and observe students in a classroom or social setting if needed.
“Corporate support like what we have received from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma is very important to us as we work with the schools to provide this needed service to the community,” says Dr. Gerry Clancy, OU-Tulsa president. “Research has shown that schools that have an OU school-based clinic have increased test scores and lower absenteeism. By working closely with our school partners, we can identify needs, ensure access and provide care in a comfortable, familiar setting. We are proud to have Blue Cross and Blue Shield’s support for this important program.”
For more information on the OU School of Community Medicine and the OU school-based clinics, visit http://tulsa.ou.edu.