COMMUNITY HEALTH NURSE

ROLE OF THE COMMUNITY HEALTH NURSE AT MELVILLE SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL

School Health Services are delivered in all public secondary schools and colleges across Western Australia. Community Health Nurses provide first point of entry into the health system for children and adolescents and are the key health contact for the school. School staff and Community Health Nurses work in partnership to enhance the health, well-being and educational outcomes for individuals and groups of students.

Our Community Health Nurses collaborate with the Student Services team to provide care for students with particular difficulties. They are skilled in assessing adolescent health needs and frequently engage in health counselling to identify issues, risks and protective factors, provide advice, brief interventions, referral to other services and follow-up care.

The Health Centre, located in the Student Services area, is a place where adolescents can either drop in (ideally at recess or lunch) or make an appointment to discuss health and well-being issues. The recommended pathway for attending the Health Centre is that the student requests permission to leave class by showing his/her diary to the teacher. The student may then walk to Student Services and sign in using their Academy card at which point they may see the Community Nurse.

If deemed unwell enough to be excused from school, the Community Nurse will phone the student’s parent/carer. To improve overall resiliency, we discourage mobile phone messaging between students and parents during the school day as miscommunication regarding illness or injury may lead to confusion and angst for the parent.

WHAT ARE THE HEALTH SERVICES IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS?

  • Access to health services for students to address a range of health issues.
  • Support for teachers to provide health education in the classroom (e.g. sexual health).
  • Facilitation of health related professional development for teachers (e.g. anaphylaxis and asthma).
  • Student health and wellbeing programs (e.g. resilience).
  • Support for school health promotion initiatives such as mental health (e.g RUOK Day).
  • Assistance for staff and parents to develop health care plans for students with special needs (e.g. chronic illness, physical disability or other complex health conditions).
  • Assistance to the school in establishing systems to deal with illness and injury in the absence of a nurse.
  • First aid for medical emergencies if on site.

Our main focus is to empower students to become self-responsible young adults. It is important to note that we do not dispense any medication and students are encouraged to carry one dose of analgesia e.g. Panadol.

Appointments may be made by phoning 62741320 or emailing HealthCentre.Melville.SHS@education.wa.edu.au.

If there are any changes to your child’s health status or if you simply have a query, please do not hesitate to phone or email the Health Centre.

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