Washington, DC – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Barbara A. Mikulski (Both D-MD) announced that the school-based health center at the Friendship Academy of Math, Science and Technology Information in Baltimore will receive a $414,100 upgrade and expansion made possible by the Affordable Care Act and a grant from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to the Baltimore Medical System (BMS). This will be the fourth upgrade of a Baltimore school-based clinic by BMS in two years. Nationwide, 197 school-based health center programs will receive $80 million of funding through the School-Based Health Center Capital Program.
“Healthy students can concentrate on learning. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, more students in Baltimore are going to have greater access to preventive and primary care services right inside their school, allowing them to focus on math and science and all of their classes,” said Senator Cardin. “I am proud that the federal government will continue to be a strong partner with BMS to improve the health of our students.”
“Learning does not happen in a vacuum,” Senator Mikulski said. “If a child is hungry, he will have a hard time learning fractions. If a child is sick, she will have a hard time taking a chemistry test or completing an algebra assignment. If we want our children to succeed in their education, if we want all our children to have the greatest chance at a bright future, we must look at their entire health and well-being. School-based health centers do just that – they are often the primary source of health care for children in need, whether the need is primary medical, dental, or mental health care. Because of this excellent public-private partnership, more children in Baltimore will have access to the health care services that will help keep them healthy and ready to learn.”
According to HHS, a school-based clinic typically provides a combination of primary care, mental health care, substance abuse counseling, case management, dental health, nutrition education, health education and health promotion activities. School-based health centers help improve the overall health and wellness of all children through health screenings, health promotion and disease prevention activities.
Baltimore Medical System is a community-based, independent non-profit dedicated to improving the health and wellness of medically underserved communities in the Greater Baltimore area. They are the largest Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) system in Maryland.