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La Clinica opens new school health centers

CENTRAL POINT — La Clinica has opened new school-based health centers for students at two Central Point elementary schools.

The part-time centers have opened at Central Point Elementary and Mae Richardson Elementary, adding to three already in operation in the Central Point School District. There are three centers in the Medford School District and one serving the Phoenix-Talent School District.

La Clinica has provided health and outreach services to schools for several years, but recently started having services available on a consistent basis. The centers offer routine physicals, sports exams, immunizations, hearing and vision screenings, diagnosis and treatment of minor illnesses and chronic health issues and treatment of minor injuries. Mental health services such as behavioral health screenings, assessments, treatment and counseling are also available.

Site coordinator Elise Travertini said there had been mental health services available at Central Point and Mae Richardson already, but that demand for additional personnel grew over time.

"They were really saying, 'Gosh, we'd really love some more medical support,' " Travertini said.

Enrolled students and their siblings, ages 2 through 18, can be seen at the centers. Travertini said benefits include less class time missed by students needing to see a medical provider, parents not needing to come pick them up and drop them back up, and a significantly improved rate of students returning to class after their appointment. Travertini said on-site health workers can also refer students to other providers based on their individual need.

"There's this huge need. They really want to keep these kids in school," Travertini said.

Reach reporter Ryan Pfeil at 541-776-4468 or rpfeil@mailtribune.com. Follow him at www.twitter.com/ryanpfeil.