A new program at Shawnee Public Schools this school year will allow students to see a physician through video conference while at school, with parent permission, for common ailments from sore or strep throats to ear infections and even the flu.

A new program at Shawnee Public Schools this school year will allow students to see a physician through video conference while at school, with parent permission, for common ailments from sore or strep throats to ear infections and even the flu.

The Shawnee School Board heard Monday night that the program is being enacted at Jefferson and Horace Mann Elementary Schools, the Shawnee Early Childhood Center and Shawnee High School.

The monthly board meeting included other items of businesses as the district gears up for back-to-school, including bid approval for ongoing vestibule work at Jefferson and Will Rogers Elementary Schools, where summer projects are under way to get the schools ready for the first day of classes next week.

Concerning the new health care options being offered, the Shawnee School Board heard Monday from Trevor Nutt from Team Clinics.

The District's Health Coordinator, LaRita Haffey, also addressed the board on the new service.

With local health aides or nurses on site using remote diagnostic equipment, students at any of the four sites in the program can see a doctor or physician's assistant through TV video conferences as those medical professionals work with nurses or health aides at the local school sites.

The system, with parental permission, allows a student to be seen virtually by a physician. With local tests administered for strep throat or flu swabs, for example, the doctor could prescribe antibiotics or even suggest that the student follow-up with their own doctor.

Parents who are at work and can't be there for the virtual visit can be included on the conference with an installed phone one app and can even ask the doctor questions during the live doctor visit. And if a student needs an antibiotic for an ear infection, for example, the prescription will be sent to the pharmacy the parent chooses.

The service will also be open to teachers and staff members.

Team Clinics will file claims with the student's insurance provider. If a student has no insurance, Team Clinics will take care of the visit.

“We're prepared to take care of the child,” Nutt said.

Superintendent Dr. April Grace said Shawnee had a pilot program of this service last year and Shawnee is the first school district to offer such services.

She said the goal is for the district to provide more “wraparound” services to students and families and this is a way to provide a basic level of health care needs.

Haffey said they are getting everything set up and interested parents with students at the four school sites can fill out any paperwork at Meet-the-Teacher nights. Team Clinics handles all paperwork, insurance and billing; the school district is not involved in any of that paperwork.

While it is for the four schools at the onset, Haffey said she hopes to expand the program eventually to all district schools sites.

Training will be held for school nurses and health aides before school starts.

So far, several students have already signed up, Haffey said.