The delivery of prevention services to children and adolescents through traditional healthcare settings is challenging for a variety of reasons. Parent- and community-focused services are typically not reimbursable in traditional medical settings, and personal healthcare services are often designed for acute and chronic medical treatment rather than prevention. To provide preventive services in a setting that reaches the widest population, those interested in public health and prevention often turn to school settings. This paper proposes that an equitable, efficient manner in which to promote health across the life course is to integrate efforts from public health, primary care, and public education through the delivery of preventive healthcare services, in particular, in the education system. Such an integration of systems will require a concerted effort on the part of various stakeholders, as well as a shared vision to promote child health via community and institutional stakeholder partnerships. This paper includes (1) examination of some key system features necessary for delivery of preventive services that improve child outcomes; (2) a review of the features of some common models of school health services for their relevance to prevention services; and (3) policy and implementation strategy recommendations to further the delivery of preventive services in schools. These recommendations include the development of common metrics for health outcomes reporting, facilitated data sharing of these metrics, shared organization incentives for integration, and improved reimbursement and funding opportunities.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health