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Freehold Borough school board takes steps to ensure students’ health

FREEHOLD – The Freehold Borough K-8 School District Board of Education has renewed an agreement with a health provider to ensure the health and well-being of the district’s pupils is maintained.

According to a resolution, the board has partnered with the United Way of Monmouth and Ocean Counties as part of an integrated health impact plan with the purpose of providing in-school access to health services for students since the 2017-18 school year.

The nurse practitioner services offered from the United Way to Freehold Borough are provided by the Visiting Nurse Association Health Group Inc. (VNAHG).

Freehold Borough was a successful applicant to the integrated health impact program to provide nurse practitioner services to pupils for the 2019-20 school year. The health services are for all pupils from pre-kindergarten to eighth grade, according to district administrators.

Services will be paid for by the United Way and the board agreed to provide matching grant funds in the amount of $10,000 to continue the program, according to the resolution.

The VNAHG will provide advance practice nurses for a maximum of 11 hours per week on school premises, providing healthcare services to pupils, maintenance of records and record keeping for services provided, providing workers compensation coverage and liability and malpractice insurance coverage for VNAHG employees, and ensure staff are licensed and qualified to provide the qualified services, and providing regular and periodic billing for services provided.

Healthcare services the VNAHG is responsible for providing to pupils includes, but is not limited to, performing a limited number of school entry physicals, sports physicals and work physicals, assessment and episodic care for children as approved by a parent or guardian, teaching about medication and self-care, consultation with parents, staff and/or faculty regarding student health issues, collaborating with other health professionals, and other nursing activities that are required and agreed to by the Freehold Intermediate School, the school board, parents or guardians, and the VNAHG, according to the resolution.

The school district will provide a list of children needing services, providing support on days of operation, assuring appropriate liability coverage for its employees and facilities, and providing appropriate areas in the school for the provision of services.

There will not be any charge to pupils for the services. Although the services are sponsored by the United Way, the VNAHG may bill Medicaid for services rendered to students. The VNAHG and the district agreed the nurse practitioner’s time will be provided at no cost to the district.

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