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Packard Children's Hospital, Foundation Provide Financial Support for School Nurses in San Jose
Date:11/5/2007

Joint grant of $2.65 million to support San Jose Unified School District

PALO ALTO, Calif., Nov. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- Lucile Packard Children's Hospital and the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children's Health today announced a joint grant of $2.65 million over five years to the San Jose Unified School District. This 'demonstration project' will restore full-time school nursing programs in four schools located in neighborhoods where many children lack access to regular health care services.

San Jose Unified currently has a ratio of only one nurse to 2,055 students, only about one-third the federally recommended level of 1 to 750, according to Don Iglesias, superintendent of the San Jose Unified School District. Yet school nurses increasingly are called upon to provide highly complex care, including assisting in chronic disease management.

"Children who come to school with poorly managed asthma or diabetes, dental pain or behavioral issues are not able to perform at their best level academically," Iglesias said. "Our nurses are overwhelmed. We appreciate the willingness of Packard Children's and the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children's Health to help us address this immediate issue and develop a model for longer term solutions."

The project is designed to help children succeed in school by improving their access to primary care and prevention services, and by establishing a "medical home" for students who do not have a regular health care provider. In addition to four school nurses, the grant also includes funding for a nurse practitioner based at School Health Clinics of Santa Clara County. The nurse practitioner will consult with the school nurses; assist in creating care plans for children with chronic problems; offer primary care; and refer patients to other healthcare professionals.

Research has shown that children who have a medical home where they receive ongoing health services fare better overall, but the cost of developin
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SOURCE Lucile Packard Children's Hospital
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