Health clinic a partnership between Hannibal public school district and Clarity Healthcare

The doors of a school-based health clinic will open in Hannibal during the upcoming school year, although the 2017-18 school year may arrive before the site is fully ready to see patients, according to Susan Johnson, superintendent of the Hannibal public school district.

During Wednesday night’s meeting of the Hannibal Board of Education, Johnson reported that renovations to the first floor of the Special Services Building (SSC) on the high school/middle school campus, where the clinic will be based, have yet to begin.

“I think it will be shortly after the school year starts before it is open,” she said.

The clinic, which will not treat “walk-in” members of the general public, is being made possible through a partnership featuring the school district and Clarity Healthcare. It will be called The PATCH (Pirates Access to Treatment with Clarity Healthcare) Center.

Clarity is covering the cost of the SSC renovations. The school district is covering the cost of installing a new sidewalk that will route all patient traffic to the front of the building as a security measure. Additional security steps, such as buzzed-in access to the clinic, are planned before the facility opens.

The clinic’s staff, which will be provided by Clarity, will consist of a nurse practitioner (7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.), a nurse (7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.), a community service worker/receptionist (7 a.m. to 5 p.m.) and a counselor (8 a.m. to 5 p.m.). The number of counselors will likely be increased, according to Johnson, who envisions a demand for mental health services, at least at the outset. Staffing hours will be adjusted once the Center opens, added Johnson.

The superintendent believes the clinic will provide healthcare savings on back-to-school immunizations, athletic physical exams and a reduced co-pay for school district staff who utilize the Center.

Quarterly meetings are planned to help provide oversight of the facility. Patient feedback will be sought through surveys.

Reach reporter Danny Henley at danny.henley@courierpost.com