Regional Alliance for Healthy Schools awarded grant for Ypsilanti High School renovations

With the help of a grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration, the Regional Alliance for Health Schools (RAHS) school-based health center at Ypsilanti High School will undergo renovations to improve the patient experience.

Ypsilanti High School is home to one of six RAHS school-based health centers in Washtenaw County. RAHS provides school-based health programs and clinical services that improve the well-being of students, their families and communities. In addition to direct physical and mental health services, RAHS offers three comprehensive health intervention programs targeting substance use and abuse, childhood obesity, and asthma as well as after school programs that offer mentoring and youth leadership opportunities. RAHS is staffed by University of Michigan Health System nurse practitioners, physicians, social workers, dietitians, medical assistants, and other support staff. RAHS is dedicated to creating a healthy student body, believing that healthy students make better students.

The $392,000 grant from the HRSA will allow the RAHS to convert a computer classroom and storage area into a full-service, adolescent-friendly health center.

The renovations will create more than 1,400 square feet of clinical space — including two exam rooms, a dietitian office and counseling room, an activity and large counseling group room, and a lab and consultation room.

Currently, the space only allows for one confidential patient visit at a time. Once the renovations are completed, the health center will be able to handle multiple physical and mental health patients as well as therapeutic group sessions simultaneously.

"These renovations allow us to better meet the need for private, confidential services for adolescents, and they vastly improve the patient experience," says Jennifer Salerno, director of RAHS.

The goal is to begin and end renovations during summer break 2013.

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