Central Texas school district offers virtual doctor’s visits for students

Published: Apr. 28, 2021 at 11:47 AM CDT
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SALADO, Texas (KWTX) - Almost every parent knows what it’s like to get the call to pick up a sick child from school, but one Central Texas school district is taking a different approach.

Salado ISD has partnered with Baylor Scott & White to offer pediatric clinic visits, right in the nurse’s office. The visits are done virtually with a parent and a doctor from McLane Children’s Medical Center.

If a child feels sick, they head to the nurses’ office like normal. Dr. Jaime Avila, division director for outpatient pediatrics for Baylor Scott & Whtie, said if it’s something that can be dealt with virtually, the nurse then starts a virtual visit with a parent and a doctor.

Dr. Avila said there are a lot of benefits to a program like this. The virtual visits give the school nurse a chance to connect with parents and a doctor to help determine what kind of care a student really needs.

Dr. Avila said sometimes, a student can be treated right in the nurse’s office, and they don’t need to leave school.

“They can go back to class and have that continuity of just staying in the school and continuing their education,” Dr. Avila said.

“It’s beneficial to parents because your kiddo is seen by a professional, evaluated, and oftentimes treated right then and there without further treatment needed.”

If a child does have an illness that needs treatment, Dr. Avila said it’s important to get that treatment as soon as possible. With the virtual visits, Dr. Avila said care can start sooner. She said doctors are able to make appointments for later that day, if needed.

Dr. Avila said the hospital serves a large portion of Central Texas, and the partnership with the school is a great way for them to provide care to more of the community.

“This is actually a really good efficient way for us to get out into these areas, and it’s really great because once we see them, we can actually expedite care,” Dr. Avila said.

The program has been going on at the elementary and middle school in Salado this year, and next year it will be extended to the high school. If you’re interested in signing up, you can contact the school district.

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