WEDOWEE--Earlier this school year 234 Wedowee Elementary and Middle School students received free comprehensive health screenings from the Sight Savers America (SSA) KidCheck Plus program. Funding for this event was made possible by a grant from the Stringfellow Health Fund of the Community Foundation of Northeast Alabama. This is the first year the program conducted these health and vision screenings in Randolph County Schools.
Participating students received screenings for height and weight with BMI; vital signs; eyes, ears, nose and throat; chest and abdomen; skin and musculoskeletal; dental; vision; and hearing. Health screening results were generated onsite and sent home to each child's parents, as well as delivered to the school nurse for her records. Across Alabama, approximately 50 percent of children receiving the health screenings are found to have at least one potential health problem. The most common are high BMI, vision and dental problems.
In Randolph County, the SSA KidCheck Plus program partnered with Southern Union State Community College. Most of the health screenings were performed by 15 Southern Union nursing students under faculty supervision. The vision screenings were conducted by trained Sight Savers America Vision Check staff using a Plusoptix auto refractor. This state-of-the-art optometric device allowed the students to be screened in a non-invasive, time efficient manner; capturing full refraction data in less than one second. Each child failing the vision screening will receive case managed eye care follow-up through Sight Savers America's Children's Eye Care Network. Sight Savers America's award winning follow-up protocol is designed to ensure that each child receives necessary follow-up eye care from a local eye care provider and achieves their best vision possible. The dental screenings were performed by a dentist from Sarrell Dental, and the parents of all children screened are contacted to ensure that their child has a dental home and access to any necessary dental follow-up care.