SBHC Success Stories


Our School Based Health Center was awarded an Oral Health Grant from the National Assembly of School Based Health Care for $15,000.

The grant will help fund our Oral Health Initiatives. Barbara deNevers and Andrea Sandoval attended a training on Oral Health. During the training they were taught to do oral assessments and apply fluoride varnish. Through the Oral Health Initiative, they will also be developing a referral system so that the students who need extensive dental care will get the appropriate care.

The nurse practitioner has added an oral assessment to each well child exam. During the exam she also applies the fluoride varnish to the teeth of the children. We are applying the varnish to all the students, Kindergarten through 12th grade. If further follow up is necessary, we are referring the students to our Dental Clinic in El Rito. Our goal is to provide the fluoride varnish to at least 150 students between the Mesa Vista and Pojoaque School Based Clinics by June 2013.

Pojoaque School Based Health Center (December 2012)

A student was referred because they were in crisis. The mental health provider was not coming to Chaparral until the next day. The role of the SBHC was to connect the student with a provider in order to resolve/lessen the crisis.

The 12th grade student was able to be seen by a mental health provider via our telemedicine unit. The provider was at Las Cruces high and connected to Chaparral high. The student was also placed in the energy pod after meeting with the provider via telehealth and was able to stay in school and have a productive day. The entire intervention took about 45 minutes and the student was very happy. The student now sees the provider in person regularly and is doing well. He is going to graduate on schedule.

Chapparal SBHC (December 2012)

The Teen Wellness Coordinator along with other La Clinica staff was able to get all middle school and high school students NMSIIS printed and reviewed by our Teen Wellness Provider. We had over 50 students who were not in compliance with the CDC recommended immunizations. We then were able to send out letters to parents along with VFC Administration consent forms and the information sheets. The students were able to bring the consent forms to the Teen Wellness Center or to the schools receptionist. We received over 40 consent forms back.

As a SBHC we felt like it was our responsibility to make sure all or our students were up to date with their immunizations It was great that our Teen Wellness provider as able to review all the NIMSIIS records so that we could send out all of the consent forms out before we got too far into the school year. As soon as we started receiving back the consent forms we immediately started scheduling the students in to receive their immunizations. We are still continuing to see students and getting them all up to date on their recommended vaccine. Being able to have all or our students up to date on all of their immunizations gives the Teen Wellness Center great pride knowing that we are making sure that there is no child left behind. We are doing our best making sure that our students and staff is getting all the wonderful benefits that our SBHC has to offer.

In the past students were not receiving their recommended immunizations. The school nurse would send out letters every year to the parents, but never received the response that the school would have liked to. Being able to team up with the school staff and being able to have face to face contact with the parents played a significant part in why the Teen Wellness Center was able to be so successful in the amount of consent forms we were able to get retuned. The SBHC was able to administer immunizations to over 40 students this semester. There are more students that are scheduled to receive their immunizations this year and we are excited that the parents have allowed us to administer the vaccines to their children at the Teen Wellness Center.

Escalante Mid/High School (December 2012)

As front desk I have registered more than twice the amount of students from the previous year (2011/2012). We have had more referrals from staff and especially the district school nurse Yvonne Baca. Students are provided with services according to their individual needs.

Students have access to a health center next to their school. Students are more aware of their rights for confidential services. West school district nurse Yvonne Baca stated “it’s good to have you there, now I can take care of the elementary schools on those days.”

There has always been one school nurse for the entire West Las Vegas school district. Now we have a medical provider, nurse and a BH provider available on Tuesdays and Thursdays on school grounds.

West Las Vegas (November 2012)

We applied for a grant through the Frost Foundation. We received a $10,000.00 grant.

Capital High School’s ethnic mix is unique in that its students are predominantly Hispanic: 86% Hispanic, 9.5% Caucasian, 3.5% Native American and 1% African American. 25% are classified as English-language learners and 87% are economically disadvantaged. Approximately 47% or half of Capital High School School-Based Health Center users are undocumented immigrants, ineligible for public health insurance and therefore having little access to care elsewhere. The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned pregnancy reports the 52% of Latina’s get pregnant at least once before age 20. In 2010, NM’s birth rate for Hispanic women age 15 – 17 was 41.4 per 1000 women age 15 to 17 compared to an overall NM rate of 28.3.

A key element of ensuring young women avail themselves of reproductive services is maintaining confidentiality. This commitment to confidentiality poses challenges in ensuring the financial viability of providers committed to ensure access to comprehensive reproductive services for underage young women. Since parent’s insurance can only be billed if the young person give permission for the details of her visit be available to her parents, the Santa Fe Teen Health Centers generally cannot bill private insurance where an explanation of benefits notice will show the young person’s visits to the teen health centers. Thus, about 60% of visits for reproductive services provided at the teen health centers are provided at no charge.

Santa Fe Teen Health (November 2012)

We applied for a grant through the SF Community Foundation. We received a $15,000.00 grant.

Short term outcomes: All incoming freshman at the high schools receive comprehensive presentation on reproductive and behavioral health services available at the teen health centers resulting in timely utilization of those services. Increased utilization of services at the teen health centers by Santa Fe’s youth. Long term outcomes: reduction in youth reporting first sexual encounter before age 14; reduction in rates of unprotected sex among sexually active Santa Fe youth as measured in the most recent YRRS. A reduction in positive pregnancy tests and incidence in STDs as captured in PMS’ practice management system.

Number of unduplicated served in 2011 – 2012 was 1057, a 30% increase from previous year; pregnancy tests performed decreased to 205 for a 14% decrease from last year. Negative tests decreased from 86% to 79% while positive tests increased from 11% to 21%. Part of the reason for the increase was reduced capacity to see all students needing an appointment during school hours because of the transition to electronic medical records. The medical provider will stress the reproduction options available to students during his classroom presentation at the beginning of the school year.

Santa Fe Teen Health Centers (November 2012)

As the SBHC Coordinator, I was in charge of planning, contacting resources/agencies/entities and collaborating with community partners and agencies to plan and set up the Teen Health Fair/ Career Fair. The providers and staff at the Quemado SBHC planned, prepared and manned their booth at the Teen Health Fair. Dr. Nebblett had the STD/Teen Pregnancy/Family Planning booth, Mary Jo Shortes, LISW, had the Anxiety/Depression booth, Carm Chavez, MAI/Customer Access Representative helped at the Trivial Pursuit Game Contest, and I also set up the tobacco use/ abuse booth and had staff from the PMS/Catron County Medical Center there helping/manning a booth as well.

Dr. Nebblett, MD, said that “The students were more attentive this year than he has ever seen them and they seemed genuinely interested in the information about STDs and teen pregnancy and were not afraid to ask the tough questions.” One of the teachers, and a Natural Helpers Sponsor, Missy Lengstorf, said, “I believe this was the best Teen Health Fair and Career Fair that I have been to. Everything was very organized and the kids seemed to really listen to the presenters at each booth and believe that they learned things today.” One of the students said, “this was neat the way you did the Teen Health Fair today, I liked being able to get the information at each booth and the game was a lot of fun and our team won! Yeah!”

Quemado SBHC (November 2012)

A teacher referred a student to the SBHC noting extreme concerns about suicidal ideation. The student was seen ASAP and the provider on staff made an immediate referral to a behavior health staff member to conduct a mental health status exam. The provider confirmed the student was indeed suicidal, noting she had a plan to hang herself that afternoon. The family was contacted and the SBHC staff coordinated admission to the hospital. This example underscores the crucial role SBHCs have in screening and referral for students at high risk for suicide.

Onate High School (Las Cruces)

A female student currently residing with an aunt was experiencing severe depression and anxiety and was about to be kicked out of her aunt’s home. The student had been rejected by her parents and was facing severe issues of rejection and had little to no adult mentors or role models to help her develop coping skills. Weekly sessions with the on-site behavior health provider since spring 2011 has helped the student tremendously.

The student reports, “I was smoking marijuana daily to help me deal with things, I don’t want to have to count on that; I have goals, things I want to do and that will just get in the way.” The student’s school attendance has improved to near perfect and she is exhibiting greater motivation to complete school. More importantly she is developing a sense of mastery over some aspects of her life. She is no longer at risk of failing school or being kicked out of her aunt’s home. 

School on Wheels (Albuquerque)

A 17 year old male student was seen in the SBHC for coughing and increased shortness of breath and a history of asthma. He was referred by his football coach on a Wednesday and was seen that same day. His grandparents were unable to get a same day appointment with his regular provider. The student was diagnosed with pneumonia and exacerbation of reactive airway disease. He was given an antibiotic and was also prescribed an aero-chamber to use with his inhaler. The respiratory therapy intern from ENMU provided instruction on how to use the device. The student’s health improved within hours and he was released to play football that weekend. The student missed only a few class periods from school. 

Roswell High School

A 6th grade student was experiencing severe headaches and was referred to the SBHC by a local community non-profit, ENLACE. The provider diagnosed severe tension headaches after a complete normal physical examination, including eye chart, and discussion with the student and her mother. The SBHC provider learned the family had no regular access to medical care and that the children were not eligible for Medicaid. Subsequently, the SBHC also treated a 4 year old sibling for an ear infection.  This story demonstrates the importance of community partnership with local organizations to identify and serve children in need of health care. Staff at the SBHC participated in the ENLACE Health Fair to increase awareness of services and has an ongoing partnership with ENLACE staff to coordinate care for underserved families.

Mesa Middle School (El Rito)

SBHC staff reviewed a student’s immunization record and noted he had never been immunized. Several letters to the parents went unanswered and the school administration had “given up” hope to get the student up-to-date. The SBHC staff persisted with the parents and provided one-on-one health promotion about the importance of immunization. They invited the parents to the SBHC to tour the facility and to become familiar with the role of the SBHC to identify students at risk for disease and health promotion.  The parents agreed and the student began receiving vaccines in October.  The SBHC staff reported, “We feel we should never give up. This one student and one step at a time can make a difference in a child’s health which ultimately affects many people. We embrace and appreciate our partnership with DOH Vaccines for Children Program.”

Escalante High School (Tierra Amarilla)