Northern Interior Rural: Nechako Valley Secondary School Clinic

Six family doctors are now providing weekly clinics at Nechako Valley Secondary School in Vanderhoof, through a new school clinic aimed at improving health outcomes for local students. Northern Interior Rural division doctors recognized that barriers to health care access, including lack of transportation and limited availability of doctors outside of school hours, had created gaps in care that were negatively affecting health outcomes for Vanderhoof youth—students in the region have experienced increased rates of teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections. As well, students with mental health and substance use issues have experienced challenges in connecting with local mental health resources. 

These issues inspired the division to partner with the Child and Youth Mental Health and Substance Use (CYMHSU) Collaborative, community health partners, and local youth to create  the Nechako Valley Secondary School Medical Clinic. The clinic gives students a highly accessible way to improve their mental, physical, and emotional health, and to connect with other community health resources. Students can book appointments through a school counsellor, or through a specialized clinic app or the school’s website. 

The goal of the clinic is to provide health screening and lifestyle counselling that will result in positive health outcomes for students—including decreases in teen pregnancy and STI rates, and a reduction in visits to the local ER—and to provide students with comprehensive care that will create stronger patient-provider relationships for them in the future.

Read the article in Northern Interior Rural Division’s Spring 2018 Newsletter to learn more about the Nechako Valley Secondary School Medical Clinic.

Read about other division-led school-based clinics.