Provider Perceptions of a Mature School-Based Health Center's Effect on Adolescent Health and Wellness: A Case Study
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School-based health centers (SBHCs) have emerged as a model of care that enhances utilization of health care services for U.S. adolescents. Staffed by interdisciplinary teams, physicians play a largely supervisory role in these centers, where nurses and Nurse Practitioners play a critical role. Yet the school-based health center model is unfamiliar to many nurses. The passage of comprehensive national health care reform included dedicated funding for school-based health centers, so this model is expected to expand in the near future. The aims of this study were: (1) To explore how a mature SBHC functions to impact the health and well-being of adolescents; and (2) To explore how adolescent health care providers in a mature SBHC perceive the effect of its utilization on the health and well-being of adolescent users. The research question was: How does a SBHC affect the health and well-being of its adolescent users, as perceived by providers in a mature school health center? The study used a single case study methodology and employed multiple methods of data collection, including interviews with the providers, staff and historians of the center, document review, descriptive epidemiologic data, and limited observation. An adaptation of Bronfenbrenner’s ecological model of multiple influencers as the theoretical framework guided interviews and data analysis. Findings included the themes of: easy access, providers as connectors, and care of the whole adolescent. This SBHC was able to construct a robust nexus of care that fit the needs of adolescent users, creating a complex network of internal and external partnerships with the school and local community.
Table of Contents
Introduction -- Review of literature -- Methodology -- Findings -- Appendix A.Letter of support -- Appendix B. Email invitations -- Appendix C. Demographic survey forms -- Appendix D. Email research protocol -- Appendix E. Consent form -- Appendix F. Sample interview guides