Belton ISD has partnered with Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center on Fort Hood to open a fully-functional clinic available to BISD military families.
The idea for a school-based clinic came from another military post up in Washington State where there are seven clinics throughout three school districts. Now, Fort Hood is following suit.
"Well, when we were approached by Doctor Chiles about the possibility, we were very excited because I think anything we can do to support our military families, we're for it," Nurse Charlotte Smith, Coordinator of Health Services for Belton ISD, said.
The clinic, directed by Maj. Daniel Chiles, DO, MPH, is staffed by Darnall doctors and nurses. The clinic officially opened at Belton High School Thursday.
"We're actually going to the school, taking care of patients in their environment, so they're not missing more school or classes," Dr. Daniel Chiles said.
Darnall's first school-based health clinic will open every Thursday from now on from 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
"They're gonna be thirty minute appointments. We're gonna have availability for walk-ins as well for you know things like sore throats, coughs, colds, things like that," Dr. Chiles added.
Comprehensive primary care services including physical exams, immunizations and minor illnesses/injuries will be offered at the clinic for all BISD students grades 6th through 12th.
The new clinic has the potential to serve nearly 700 Belton ISD students... 400 active military and 300 retired military children.
"It seemed a great starting point for school-based health care in the Fort Hood area," Dr. Chiles said.
The clinic seems to be off to a great start already.
"We had two students come in, both of them military dependents, and one of them had an illness that came on suddenly at school, another one an injury that happened yesterday," Nurse Smith said. " And because the parents had authorized for them to be at the school-based clinic, we facilitated getting them in to be seen."
BISD emailed all military families, active and retired, to inform them of this new opportunity for health care and offer a consent form.
All eligible students must have a consent form signed by a parent or guardian if they are under the age of 18. Students 18 or older can sign their own consent forms.
Parents can make appointments by calling the adolescent medicine clinic at (254) 553-3523 or (254) 553-3765.
Dr, Chiles said they hope to expand the program to other communities with high numbers of military families like Killeen and Copperas Cove.
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