School-Based Health Centers: Critical Access Points for Children’s Health Services

Posted January, 31 2014 by Amanda

SBHC ReportHCFANY Steering Committee member and co-leader of the Children, Youth and Families Task Force, the Children’s Defense Fund – New York, recently released a new report on School-based Health Centers in New York State. School-based Health Centers in New York State: Ensuring Sustainability and Establishing Opportunities for Growth, includes recommendations for how to finance Centers through a managed care model.

Here’s what principle author Lorraine Gonzalez-Camastra had to say about the report:

School-based health centers are invaluable health care providers for children and youth who live in poverty. They are easily accessed in local schools and communities. Furthermore, they are a vehicle for eliminating racial and ethnic health disparities. Two-hundred twenty seven of these critical service providers exist statewide. Despite their excellent performance as health care providers for children and youth, these centers are now in the position of needing to ensure their viability given the implementation of the Medicaid Redesign initiative.

Come October 2014, the transition for School-based health centers will take effect.  It’s important that workable solutions that will guarantee program sustainability and provide opportunities for site expansion are generated. The Cuomo Administration has begun to host roundtable discussions with Center providers and managed care organizations on how to ensure seamless transitioning into managed care.  CDF-NY looks forward to being part of a productive conversation where financing solutions can be generated.  Within the coming months, it’s critical that School-based health centers have a clear pathway on how to keep running and providing excellent primary and ancillary care to children and youth.

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