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Students at 3 West Hawaiʻi schools can get health care on-site

Hawaiʻi Island Community Health Center
Hawaiʻi Island Community Health Center
Hawaii Island Community Health Center at Hōnaunau Elementary.

Students and families at several West Hawaiʻi Island schools can now access on-campus health centers.

The Hawaiʻi Island Community Health Center opened the school-based centers at Hōnaunau Elementary, and Kealakehe Elementary and Intermediate schools.

Students at those schools can get exams, dental services and behavioral health care with a signed consent form.

"What we really hope for kids to get from school-based health care is, first and foremost the care that they need, meeting their needs, making sure that when they're in school, they have everything they need to learn," said Cecilia Royale with the Hawaiʻi Island Community Center.

"Because as a whole person, it's not just about coming to school, you have to make sure all the needs are met to make sure that they can learn and the second is to help them become advocates for their own health, and learn how to navigate the health system," she added.

The health group hopes to work with the state Department of Education to expand the program to other Big Island schools.

Teachers and staff at participating schools can take advantage of the centers in the next phase of the project.

Casey Harlow is an HPR reporter and occasionally fills in as local host of Morning Edition and All Things Considered. Contact him at charlow@hawaiipublicradio.org or on Twitter (@CaseyHarlow).
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