Estimated read time: 3-4 minutes
This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.
It's the middle of summer, and for most, students are out for summer break. Still, the Intermountain Healthcare school clinics are still open for families in at-risk communities all year.
School clinics help Utah's low-income families
Intermountain has long been dedicated to providing access to healthcare services, regardless of an individual's ability to pay. The organization operates a variety of community and school-based clinics to improve health in underserved communities.
These clinics provide convenient access to primary medical care, disease prevention, management resources, and other health services to improve community health. Increasing access to healthcare has been a core commitment to Intermountain's mission, vision, and values.
"I grew up without regular access to healthcare coverage. So, community clinics were a critical component of my access to healthcare as a kid," said Shireen Ghorbani, Intermountain community health director.
Ghorbani added, "These community clinics are, well trusted, where we can meet people where they are and to help those who have had limited access to regular healthcare feel more comfortable."
For example, there is an Intermountain clinic inside the Rose Park Elementary school. Rose Park Elementary is one of the areas in Utah with a high rate of uninsured people.
A student's health effects grades
Student poor health can cause educational setbacks and interfere with schooling. When students have untreated health issues, they are unable to fully focus on their schoolwork. Research shows that problems that emanate from poor health include a higher probability of school failure, poor levels of concentration, grade retention, and school dropout.
"We are so fortunate to have a partner in Intermountain Healthcare," said James Yapias, director of Development Office & Salt Lake Education Foundation. "They provide critical support and medical care for our children and families in a welcoming and familiar environment."
School clinics are for everyone
Even though the clinics are located inside the schools, they have a separate entrance because they are open to the public. In fact, most of the patients seen at the clinic are between the ages of 18 to 60-years-old.
The clinics see patients of all ages that perhaps would not usually have preventive screening and primary care visits. This helps to improve the health of the individuals, the families, and the community.
"We have excellent caregivers that work diligently to help our communities," said Mikelle Moore, chief community health officer at Intermountain. "Although none of this is possible without the incredible partnership and advocacy with the schools."
If someone finds that they need more specialized care for a chronic condition, they can get a referral to another location, as well as being directed to financial help if needed.
Locations for Intermountain school clinics
- Intermountain Pamela Atkinson Clinic at Liberty Elementary, 1078 S. 300 E., Salt Lake City
- Intermountain Rose Park Elementary School Clinic, 1105 W. 1000 N., Salt Lake City
Salt Lake City School District also has a community health clinic at 1388 S. Navajo St., Salt Lake City, next to Glendale Middle School.
For more information about Intermountain school clinics and other community health clinics and initiatives, visit intermountainhealthcare.org/communityhealth.