Pickens County Alabama To Share In 100K Grant


MONTGOMERY— A $100,000 Appalachian Regional Commission grant announced by Gov. Robert Bentley will provide free health screenings for students in 17 counties.

The grant will help Sight Savers America, a Pelham-based nonprofit group, build on the success of KidCheck Plus, a program that screens students, diagnoses medical concerns and coordinates follow-up care. The organization expects to conduct 70 health screenings this school year at schools in Bibb, Chambers, DeKalb, Talladega, Pickens, Hale, Macon, Blount, Calhoun, Etowah, Jackson, Jefferson, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Limestone, Marshall and Walker counties. These screenings will reach approximately 14,000 students, Sight Savers officials said.

“By diagnosing and treating common medical conditions, these free screenings help improve the health of students, leading to more productive classroom time.” Bentley said.

Sight Savers coordinates the screenings with the school systems, major health-care systems, nursing schools and local healthcare providers. At each event, up to four staff members work with local partners to check height, weight, body mass index, vital signs, teeth, vision, hearing, glucose, cholesterol and scoliosis. The most common health issues detected during these events are related to BMI, vision and dental issues.
The nurses address urgent medical needs on site, and provide a detailed report on each child’s results for local follow-up and care management.

Congress established the ARC in 1965 as a supplemental grant program to raise the standard of living, improve the quality of life and promote economic development in the Appalachian mountain region, which includes 37 Alabama counties.

The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs administers the ARC program in Alabama along with a wide range of other programs that support law enforcement, economic development, recreation, energy conservation and water resource management.


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