Principles for Developing Interdisciplinary School-based Primary Care Centers

Stephen Barnett, Virginia Niebuhr, Constance Baldwin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


A 50% increase has occurred in the number of school-based primary care centers (SBPCCs) in the United States since 1993-94. Public schools offer a well-established and respected community-based infrastructure within which health centers may feasibly be developed. SBPCCs have documented improved access to care for underserved children and some initial success in addressing the complex morbidities and associated behavioral risk factors of children and adolescents. This paper presents five working principles to help communities establish SBPCCs that link community health and social services with their educational system. The principles encompass community participation, early assessment of community needs, integration of health and human services with educational services through an interdisciplinary and interagency team approach, development of a business plan, and program evaluation. These principles reflect the experiences of 22 Texas communities which operate 76 SBPCCs. They should prove helpful to many other communities and states that propose to develop, finance, and evaluate school-based, interdisciplinary health care and prevention services.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)99-105
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of School Health
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Philosophy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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