Updated Thu, Mar 20, 2014 4:24 pm
A planned project with the purpose of making healthcare more readily available to Trimble Local School District students should be a reality by the end of summer break.
The school district hired Athens architecture firm Reiser, Valentour, and Callahan earlier in the year to draw up designs for converting a room in the middle school into a health clinic.
The conversion, funded by Hopewell Health Centers, Inc., and the Charitable Sisters of St. Joseph, is set to begin on June 2. Architect John Valentour showed final drawings to board members and Supt. Kim Jones at Tuesday’s board meeting, saying that he is about to begin the application process for building permits.
“We’ve had a pre-construction meeting, just to look at the space again,” Valentour said, “Two contractors showed up and asked questions. We found four or five different things that we need to clarify.”
Valentour added that he has contacted all area contractors he thought would be capable of doing the job, but no formal bids have been made yet.
The clinic will be located within Trimble Middle School in Jacksonville, and staffed by a certified nurse practitioner (CPN). A CPN, said Jones, is able to prescribe medication, but no opiates or any other commonly-abused prescription drugs will be kept on site.
“Those prescriptions, if any, would have to be picked up at a pharmacy,” Jones said.
Hopewell will shoulder the expense of running the clinic, including hiring staff and buying equipment, Jones added. Hopewell itself will bill students’ insurance for any services provided.
“We’ll see benefits, because children will be healthier,” Jones said. “If anything’s wrong, we can take care of it more easily at school.”
As far as the actual work goes, Valentours estimates that it will take about six weeks to complete.
“There’ll be the usual challenges with things like material deliveries, so we’re aiming to have everything delivered by June 2,” Valentour said.
The clinic should be finished by around July 18, Jones stated.