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NAACP Supports School-Based Health Centers

WHEREAS, school-based health centers (SBHCs) are located on school grounds in public schools and are designed to serve all students with a focus on the uninsured and underserved; and

WHEREAS, SBHCs provide access to primary medical care, mental health services, preventive care, social services and youth development to nearly 2 million U.S. children and adolescents; and

WHEREAS, out of the 1909 SBHCs located across the country, 57% of SBHCs are located in urban communities and roughly 70% of students using SBHCs are racial or ethnic minorities (26.2% of Africans-American, 36.8% of Hispanic, 4.4% of Asian-American, 1.7% Native American, 1.4% Other) who have historically been under-insured, uninsured, or experienced other health care access disparities; and

WHEREAS, SBHCs serving middle and high school-aged students are more likely to provide on-site treatment for sexually-transmitted disease (68%), HIV/AIDS counseling (64%), and diagnostic services such as pregnancy testing (81%); and

WHEREAS, African American children are less likely to have access to preventative care and more likely to have emergency room visits than their white counterparts; and

WHEREAS, it has been found that high-school SBHCs users had a 50 percent decrease in absenteeism and 25 percent decrease in tardiness two months after receiving school-based mental health counseling; and

WHEREAS, studies have found that African American male SBHC users were three times more likely to stay in school than their peers who did not use an SBHC.

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the NAACP reaffirms the 1992 resolution on women and children's health supporting the use of school based and school connected health services; and

BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, that NAACP will promote and work with existing organizations, state and local officials, and others to encourage increased funding and implementation of school-based  health centers nationwide.