COLDWATER, MI (WTVB) - Health care for public school students in Branch County is headed for a milestone upgrade beginning this fall. It was announced last night at the meetings of the Community Health Center of Branch County Board of Trustees and the Coldwater Board of Education that the hospital is the recipient of a planning grant to establish a school based health clinic. The program will be a collaborative effort involving the Community Health Center, the Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency, the Coldwater School District and the Branch Intermediate School System.
The planning grant to develop the program is for $50,000 to get the clinic up and running by October First. Assuming a successful launch of the program, there’s an opportunity for funding of $200,000 annually for the next three years with the emphasis on designing a clinic that can fiscally support itself after that three year period. A unique aspect of the proposal is the inclusion of a tele-health initiative which would allow from the base clinic services to be available to other schools as well, in this case, targeting the Bronson and Quincy School Districts.
On Monday, the superintendents of the three school systems along with officials from the BISD and the Health Department met to review the latest details of the clinic. School nurse programs have essentially been non-existent in Branch County schools and in many other school systems as well.