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Our Top Tips for Promoting Back-to-School Wellness During COVID-19

Our Top Tips for Promoting Back-to-School Wellness During COVID-19

With so much uncertainty around what the 2020-2021 school year will look like against the backdrop of a pandemic with no end yet in sight, one thing is for sure — routine preventive care is more important than ever this fall. 

In preparation for a safe academic year, whether classes stay virtual or go back to being fully in-person, now is the time to re-engage your patients for care and give families ample time to get their students back in for care. 

In preparation for a safe academic year, whether classes stay virtual or go back to being fully in-person, now is the time to re-engage your patients for care and give families ample time to get their students back in for care.

Here are four main areas of students’ health that we recommend focusing on to help get this school year underway safely: 

1. Schedule patients for their annual physical exams.

Some schools are starting off with virtual classes this fall, in hopes of meeting in-person again in the spring. Others are testing out a hybrid model to start. Many are even insisting on moving forward with in-person classes. 

With the great deal of uncertainty around how this school year will unfold for everyone, preventive care should absolutely be a high priority for students and staff, alike, to keep the risk for contracting COVID-19 as low as possible — no matter how schools are approaching reopening.  

Make sure your recall campaigns are set up to help get patients scheduled for their annual physicals so they can kick the year off with a clean bill of health. We recommend automating these messages via text and including a direct link for patients to call in or self-schedule online for ease and convenience.

Download this infographic to see how you can recover revenue with campaigns for essential care. 

2. Get patients back in the door for vaccinations.

Immunizations are an important piece of preventive health that many students have neglected due to shelter-in-place ordinances. Be sure to outreach to the parents of your pediatric patients to get caught up on mandatory vaccines before returning to school, especially if they are attending a school that has decided to have seated classes. The sharp decline in vaccinations during the pandemic leaves many school-aged children vulnerable to other serious infectious diseases such as measles or mumps. 

Additionally, the severity of this year’s flu season could be compounded by risks of COVID-19, and it is still unclear to scientists what the effects will be. This fall/winter, it will be important to conduct a recall campaign that focuses on getting school-aged patients in for flu vaccinations.  

To efficiently close this gap in care, many of our clinics utilize our Broadcast Messaging feature to mass-message vaccination reminders to those who have not yet received important immunizations or flu shots.  

3. Engage patients with nutrition and wellness education.

Pre-existing conditions have been identified as risk factors for COVID-19, which makes it even more crucial to check in on your school-aged patients’ preventive health habits. 

Take time to review healthy hygiene, exercise, and nutrition habits with both parents and their children. To help keep preventive care top of mind, consider setting up broadcast campaigns to regularly mass-message health education tips to relevant patient populations.

4. Connect patients to the specialty care they need.

Whether following a diet plan or adhering to an allergy shot schedule, managing chronic conditions is especially important during the pandemic. School-aged patients with pre-existing conditions, like diabetes or asthma, are at higher risk for more severe cases of COVID-19. With this in mind, make sure they are referred to and scheduled with the proper specialist so they can receive the chronic care treatment plans they need to stay healthy. 

Not much about the way schools are reopening their doors this fall will feel normal, but you can help parents and their students feel better prepared for the return to the classroom (virtual or otherwise) when you connect them to the preventive care they need for a safe and productive school year.

Are there any engagement strategies you’re employing to make sure students are healthy at school this year? We’d love to hear from you and chat about how we can support you in those efforts! 

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