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groundbreaking ceremony

Increased access to medical and mental health services will come with Otsego's new student health center this fall.

Just over one year since receiving the Child and Adolescent Health Center Program Planning Grant, construction is beginning soon for Otsego Public Schools on this school-based healthcare facility. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) awards these grants to fill a need for medical services to children. 

“Otsego Public Schools is thrilled to see this healthcare facility for students become a reality,” says Superintendent Jeff Haase. “The facility will increase access to medical and mental health services for our students, eliminating a barrier for families who have children who need to be seen.”

Otsego held a groundbreaking ceremony March 19th to mark the official start of construction for the student health center. The current girls' locker room area of the old pool at Washington Street Elementary will be renovated and house the facility. An exterior door will be added for entry. There will also be an interior entrance for students and staff. The facility is slated to open in the fall of 2024.

Data shows that 70% of students in Allegan County seek pediatric care outside of Allegan County. This student health center will eliminate access barriers for so many families. “This Child and Adolescent Health Center would provide an opportunity for our families to receive immediate services for both medical and mental health, on site, which in turn would decrease the amount of time students are absent from school and missing crucial learning opportunities,” Haase adds.

Establishment of a school-based health center is a partnership between a school, community advisory committee, and a sponsoring medical agency. Otsego has established a Community Advisory Council that includes parents, staff and medical professionals, and is partnering with InterCare Health Systems to provide medical and mental health services.

The OSHC will provide a variety of medical and mental health services including urgent care visits for things like seasonal or sudden illnesses, immunizations, well-child check-ups or counseling. This center is specifically for students and serves those ages 3-21. The center will bill insurance but students will be seen regardless of their health insurance status. 

For additional information on the Otsego Student Health Center, visit 

Services that can be provided with this health center are:

Medical Services:

  • General health assessments

  • Immunizations

  • Laboratory and diagnostic testing

  • Hearing/vision testing

  • Sports physicals

  • Nutritional counseling and specialist referrals

  • Educational programming

  • Referrals

 Behavioral Health Services

  • Individual

  • Group counseling

  • Family counseling

  • Substance abuse counseling

  • Behavioral modifications

  • Health education programming

  • Psychological assessments

  • Crisis Counseling

  • Referrals

  • Virtual Psychiatric Services

About school-based health centers: 
School-based and school-linked health center services have been provided in Michigan through the CAHC program since the 1980s. State funding for such services began in 1987 through the Michigan Department of Public Health (now the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services [MDHHS]). The CAHC program is jointly managed by MDHHS and the Michigan Department of Education (MDE). There are currently 200 existing CAHCs serving students in Michigan. 

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