One-Of-A-Kind Report from School-Based Health Alliance Shows Large Increase in Number of Nation’s School-Based Health Centers

Washington, DC—The School-Based Health Alliance unveiled the results of its one-of-a-kind Census of School-Based Health Centers (SBHCs) in a digital report in mid-January. The report, which presents survey data collected during the 2013-14 school year, shows a 20% increase in the number of SBHCs nationally since the 2010-11 report. In total, the Alliance identified 2,315 SBHCs serving students and communities in 49 of 50 states and the District of Columbia.

“We are thrilled to see such an increase in the total number of school-based health centers nationally,” said John Schlitt, President of the School-Based Health Alliance. “More communities are grasping the potential of SBHCs as a powerful investment in the health and academic potential of children and adolescents.”

SBHCs are health centers that are located on or near school campuses. They provide convenient, accessible, and comprehensive health care services for children and adolescents where they spend the majority of their time: in school. For more than 20 years, the School-Based Health Alliance has conducted a triennial census of the school-based health care field, and is the only organization that collects information about SBHC staffing and operations.

While the majority of SBHCs are still located in urban areas, the Alliance found that the largest growth of SBHCs has been in rural areas, accounting for nearly 60% of new SBHCs since the 2010-11 census. The majority of SBHCs are staffed by a primary care provider and a behavioral health provider, and, in a growing number of sites, experts in nutrition, health education, social services, oral health, and/or vision care are part of the medical team.

In addition to the census report, the Alliance simultaneously launched its Children’s Health and Education Mapping Tool, a geographic information systems (GIS) resource that allows users to layer health and education indicators and the locations of SBHCs, public schools, and hospitals to identify areas of need and plan for the expansion of services. The mapping tool was developed by the Alliance in partnership with Health Landscape and is a free tool for anyone to use.

“Our mapping tool was designed to allow users to harness the power of GIS technology for data-driven decision-making,” said Erin Schelar, Research and Evaluation Manager at the School-Based Health Alliance. “The tool can be used for everything from assessing community health to locating potential local partners and fundraising. Anyone who is interested in using hard data to analyze and expand health services can find a use for this tool.”

Both of these resources are free and available online:

To learn more about these resources, or to schedule an interview with John Schlitt or Erin Schelar, please contact Kyle Taylor, Communications Manager, by email at ktaylor@sbh4all.org or by phone at (202) 370-4384.

The School-Based Health Alliance is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization that was founded in 1995 to serve as the national voice for school-based health care. The Alliance supports the school-based health care field by providing technical assistance, resources, and trainings so they can provide the best-quality health care to their patients. In addition, the Alliance advocates for policies on the local, state, and federal level that strengthen school health, and supports its technical assistance and advocacy work—and the entire school-based health care field—through quality research and evaluation.

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