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Riley recognizes county schools for KidCheck

Gov. Bob Riley recognized Crenshaw County Schools and Troy University School of Nursing for participating in the Alabama Rural Action Commission’s KidCheck program, a school-based health screening initiative.

For 2008-09, 1,088 area students participated in KidCheck, which Riley launched in May 2008 to bring free health care screenings to K-12 school children. For the past school year, Luverne, Brantley and Highland Home Schools all participated in KidCheck.

KidCheck is modeled after successful school health screening programs in Bibb and Blount County Schools. The Alabama Power Foundation and Blue Cross/Blue Shield’s Alabama Child Caring Foundation are state supporters of KidCheck. Both have been instrumental in the program’s expansion to 23 school systems across the state during the 2008-09 school year resulting in over 17,000 children being screened.

Through KidCheck, each school selects a KidCheck Day each school year. Schools partner with area college nursing programs and organizations from across the state to administer the screenings. Needed equipment and supplies are donated or borrowed from local hospitals or health agencies. A room at the school is equipped with 8-10 different stations for physical assessments including height and weight, body mass index, temperature, blood pressure, heart rate, respiratory rate, vision and dental screenings, and examinations of their eyes, ears, nose and mouth. Following the screenings, parents receive a report and assistance for children needing additional care.

ARAC works with schools implementing KidCheck by sharing best practice information, building partnerships with regional and state organizations, and providing guidelines and forms as well as a training video. Partnerships have been built to ensure that the parents of all uninsured children receive the standard public health insurance application for Medicaid, ALL Kids, and the ACCF. Sight Savers America is coordinating the follow-up eye care services for every KidCheck event in the state. The University of Alabama’s Rural Health Institute is analyzing all of the data from KidCheck events.

The Alabama Rural Action Commission was established by Gov. Riley in 2007 to improve the quality of life in rural Alabama through cooperation and coordination of resources.

The KidCheck Health Fair for Crenshaw County Schools this year will be held during the following dates: Highland Home School – Oct. 21; Brantley School – Oct. 28; and Luverne School – Nov. 4. For additional information about KidCheck, please contact Alfredia Griffin at alfredia.griffin@crenshaw-schools.org or 334-335-6519 Ext. 211. You may also reach Chad Nichols at chad.nichols@adeca .alabama.gov or 334-414-3156.