Stu­dent phys­i­cal exam tips

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - YOU AT YOUR BEST -

School time re­quires hav­ing all of the nec­es­sary sup­plies, cloth­ing and gear ready for the year. In ad­di­tion, pre­par­ing for a new school year of­ten in­volves pro­vid­ing up­dated phys­i­cal health in­for­ma­tion to the school ad­min­is­tra­tion.

The re­quire­ments for health screen­ings and re­port­ing may vary be­tween school dis­tricts. Some phys­i­cal ex­am­i­na­tions need to be con­ducted an­nu­ally, while oth­ers may only need up­dat­ing at cer­tain in­ter­vals, such as when kids tran­si­tion from el­e­men­tary school to mid­dle school or mid­dle school to high school. Up­dated phys­i­cal forms also may be re­quired at the start of a sports sea­son.

Health screen­ings are in­tended to de­tect prob­lems that may in­ter­fere with learn­ing. Phys­i­cal ex­ams may in­di­cate is­sues that can ham­per progress or shed light on un­di­ag­nosed prob­lems that may re­quire fur­ther as­sess­ment and ne­ces­si­tate cus­tom­ized learn­ing plans to help stu­dents suc­ceed. Phys­i­cal ex­ams are also a way to en­sure stu­dents’ im­mu­niza­tions are up to date.

Ac­cord­ing to the Penn­syl­va­nia Depart­ment of Health, phys­i­cal ex­ams typ­i­cally are com­pleted by stu­dents’ pri­mary care providers. Some school dis­tricts of­fer free or low-cost health as­sess­ments through school providers as well.

Stu­dents who will be trav­el­ing for school may be re­quired to meet the health re­quire­ments of their des­ti­na­tion coun­try. For ex­am­ple, med­i­cal stu­dents ad­mit­ted to a Cana­dian uni­ver­sity may be re­quired to get a med­i­cal exam, ac­cord­ing to the Govern­ment of Canada.

Vis­it­ing the doc­tor, nurse prac­ti­tioner or a school-pro­vided med­i­cal pro­fes­sional may not make school-aged chil­dren too happy. To make the process go smoothly, con­sider these sug­ges­tions. Work with physi­cians who have ac­cess to elec­tronic health records

EHRs are se­cure tech­nol­ogy that pro­vides easy ac­cess to vac­ci­na­tion records, health his­tory, ap­point­ment re­minders, and even pre­scrip­tion in­for­ma­tion. Some providers even make it pos­si­ble for pa­tients to di­rectly ac­cess their health in­for­ma­tion through a se­cure lo­gin, help­ing save time. Make ap­point­ments dur­ing school hours Af­ter-school ap­point­ments are peak times for pe­di­atric of ces and med­i­cal clin­ics. Sign stu­dents out of school early to visit the doc­tor for med­i­cal ex­ams. The staff likely will be less har­ried, and you can spend more time ask­ing ques­tions and com­plet­ing forms. Schools may not count the ab­sence if a doc­tor’s note is pro­vided. Don’t for­get the forms

Bring the right pa­per­work so that the staff can ll out what is nec­es­sary for the school, camp or sports league. Know your in­sur­ance guide­lines

Phys­i­cal ex­ams may be part of rou­tine well vis­its. In­sur­ance com­pa­nies in­sti­tute their own poli­cies re­gard­ing how fre­quently phys­i­cals can be con­ducted (usu­ally an­nu­ally). Be sure to sched­ule the ap­point­ment ac­cord­ingly.

Phys­i­cal ex­am­i­na­tions are on many par­ents’ back-to-school to-do lists. Cer­tain strate­gies can make phys­i­cals eas­ier for adults and chil­dren alike.

The school lunches par­ents en­joyed are be­ing re­placed with fresh ideas that ac­com­mo­date to­days’ kids and schools.

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