Healthy Kids: Impacting Children’s Health in Rural Alabama


Significant changes have occurred in the healthcare community as a result of legislative decisions, the economic downturn, and long range effects of consistent annual reductions in public funding.  Community partnerships have become vital to the existence of many areas of healthcare delivery, including the Alabama State Department of Education’s School Health Services Program which is charged with the oversight of the health of students while they are enrolled in Alabama public schools.  This program, along with many state agencies, continues to struggle in finding creative ways to stretch every education dollar in order to adjust to the impact of across the board budget cuts.  A decrease in the number of registered nurses and the increasingly complex medical issues of students requiring individualized care have potentially jeopardized the ability of school nurses to adequately monitor and detect changes in the overall health status of children in the Alabama School Health Services Program.  Nursing, Medical Laboratory Sciences, and Communication Disorder students from the College of Nursing and Health Sciences (CONHS) at Auburn University Montgomery (AUM) conducted health screenings for school age children in medically underserved counties of rural Alabama. The purpose of this article will be to discuss the collaboration and implementation of an interprofessional, community-based, service-learning project entitled Healthy Kids.

Keywords: rural health; interprofessional collaboration; child health; service learning


Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:

  1. Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share (for non-commerical purposes) the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
  2. Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
  3. Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).