To better serve the healthcare needs of students, CPS has partnered with TCA Health to purchase a mobile student health clinic that will serve six schools in the Altgeld Garden community.
With two private exam rooms, a center intake area, and a space for immunizations, this clinic will act as a mobile resource for hundreds of students on Chicago's far south side.
"The space is new, clean and private," said Megan Erskine of the CPS Office of Student Health and Wellness. "It's like being in your own doctor's office."
Made possible by the Affordable Care Act, the mobile clinic will initially serve Aldridge, DuBois, Carver Elementary, CICS Bond, CICS Larry Hawkins, and Carver Military Academy. Services will range from school physicals and immunizations to preventative screenings, health and nutrition education, acute care, and health management of chronic conditions such as asthma or diabetes.
"We all know that students who are healthier have better attendance and academic outcomes," said Erskine. "This mobile health clinic will help schools meet their medical compliance needs while bringing much-needed services to children without them having to leave school or their parents having to leave work."
Earlier this month, the schools slated to be served by the clinic were invited to tour the facility – a chance for them to have operational discussions with TCA and ask school-specific questions.
"Most of the schools sent their school nurses, all of whom know how difficult it can be for their students to get good medical care," said Erskine. "They were ecstatic with what they saw."
The mobile health clinic will begin seeing patients in February, with all medical services at no cost to students. Once established, TCA hopes to expand the program to student families and the community, as well as to additional south side schools.
"Until now, TCA has only operated school-based health centers inside our schools," said Erskine. "This innovative program will allow them to expand their reach and have a larger impact. It's a win for everybody."
For more information on the mobile student health clinic, call TCA Health at (773) 995-6300 or download the mobile health clinic calendar.