AAFA Salutes School Based Health Centers for National School Based Health Awareness Month
The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) salutes the activities and services of school based health centers (SBHC) as communities across the country celebrate February as "National School Based Health Care Awareness Month".
AAFA commends the work of over 1,900 SBHCs to provide comprehensive primary and preventative care predominantly to students who have experienced health care access disparities. Through a multidisciplinary team of healthcare providers, including health educators, physicians, and registered nurses, SBHCs deliver care to nearly 2 million students and their communities in school and on school grounds, regardless of ability to pay. SBHCs ensure that students suffering from asthma and allergies receive high quality primary and preventative care, and help them manage their asthma without costing them success in school. In its most recent report, the National Assembly on School Based Health Centers indicated 94.6% of SBHCs nationwide provided treatment for students with asthma, and SBHCs in schools serving grades K-12 offered prevention strategies and health promotion services for parents and students with asthma on an individual, small group, and classroom level.
AAFA’s annual State Honor Roll™ report (www.StateHonorRoll.org) analyzes states nationwide on policies enacted to support students with asthma and allergies in elementary, middle and high schools. SBHCs promote the quality of care and a healthy school environment for students outlined in the State Honor Roll™ report.
Asthma is the leading cause of school absences from chronic illness, accounting for 14 million student absences annually. Allergies fall close behind, as the third most common chronic disease affecting children nationwide. Treatment and prevention services offered by SBHCs on school grounds are essential to ensuring school environments remain healthy and to ensuring students with asthma and allergies remain present in school so they can perform in the classroom.
Throughout this month, the National Assembly on School-Based Health Care (NASBHC) and its partners will share achievements as they gather success stories from SBHCs across the country. For more information on the work of school-based health centers and NASBHC, visit http://www.nasbhc.org/
AAFA is an independent, not-for-profit voluntary health association dedicated to improving the quality of life for people with asthma and allergies through education, advocacy and research. AAFA was founded in 1953 by the two leading professional medical organizations in the United States devoted to the allergy/immunology specialty. AAFA’s 2011 report on state policies to protect school children with allergies and asthma can be downloaded at (www.StateHonorRoll.org)