The Roaring Fork Schools and Mountain Family Health Centers (MFHC) are partnering together to open a school-based health center in Glenwood Springs High School this fall.
“We want every student to have access to affordable, comprehensive, integrated health care services, regardless of their legal status, family circumstance, place of residence, or economic means,” said Superintendent Rob Stein. “Opening a school-based health center for our Glenwood school community will be a huge step in achieving this vision.”
Currently, Glenwood Springs is the only community within the Roaring Fork Schools without a school-based health center. During the 2018-19 school year, the Roaring Fork Schools contracted with the Colorado Association for School-Based Health Care to conduct a community health needs assessment and found that there is a major gap in health services in Glenwood Springs and an increased need for adolescent health care. The new school-based health center will be centrally located in Glenwood Springs High School.
“We know that adolescents are generally more in need of health services than younger children and that our highest risk students are even more in need,” Stein said. “By offering health services in school where our students most in need of those services are already at five days a week, we’re removing a critical barrier to make sure our students get the care they need.”
After a thorough planning process, the Roaring Fork Schools met with each potential sponsor to determine capacity and interest in taking on this work. There was consensus that Mountain Family Health Centers is the best fit to operate the new school-based health center in Glenwood Springs as well as the existing centers in the other communities.
“Mountain Family Health Centers have strong roots in our communities and are already the healthcare home for many of our families, including 21,000 people across Garfield, Eagle, and Pitkin Counties,” said Stein. “They also have a proven track record of school-based clinics with medical, dental, and behavioral providers.”
Mountain Family Health Centers has received funding from The Colorado Health Foundation, Delta Dental Foundation, Garfield County, and the City of Glenwood Springs, among other funders, to support the capital and operating costs for the Glenwood Springs school-based health center.
“We’re thrilled to partner with the Roaring Fork School to expand access to affordable medical, dental, and behavioral healthcare for students throughout the Roaring Fork Valley,” said MFHC CEO Ross Brooks.
For more information on Mountain Family Health Centers, visit www.mountainfamily.org.