Teens face many physical and mental health issues that are unique to their age group, and they may not always be noticeable to their parents, teachers, or peers. That’s why regular check-ups with a primary care provider are essential to track any symptoms and respond to them before conditions worsen. In Belgrade, the Panther Clinic makes this easier than ever for teens, with an in-school healthcare clinic.
The first of its kind in Gallatin County, the Panther Clinic is a collaboration between the Belgrade School District and Community Health Partners (CHP). Opened in 2020, the clinic, located inside Belgrade Middle School, is open to all students and families of students in the Belgrade School District.
It’s also open to faculty and staff with the goal of improving preventative care, providing another access point for important primary care, and establishing a trusted, convenient resource for families to use either as their regular source of healthcare or as an option when needed.
Here are just a few of the most common health problems teens may be experiencing that the Panther Clinic can help address.
From pre-season sports physicals to the treatment of injuries that come up on the field, active teen athletes can encounter a number of health concerns to stay on top of. Sprained ankles, strained muscles, bumps and bruises, all the way up to concussions, ACL tears, and broken bones might become an issue. Having a community health center for Belgrade students gives more teens access to medical care to prevent injury and treat those acute or lingering injuries when they do occur.
According to the CDC, more than 5 million kids have asthma. Asthma can be an ongoing and known concern for students, or symptoms can come up unexpectedly during activity or seasons of poor air quality. The shortness of breath and bouts of coughing or wheezing that accompany this disease can make play and school a challenge. Fortunately, with proper treatment and management of symptoms, a child dealing with asthma can live normally and avoid any long-term lung damage. The Panther Clinic can help address these issues and get kids back to breathing easy.
As our society continues to combat the stigma surrounding mental illness, the Panther Clinic is here to offer support. Teens face emotional challenges both at home and at school and changing brain and body chemistry, which can manifest in conditions like anxiety, depression, and social phobias. As a branch of CHP, the Panther Clinic can easily connect students with behavioral health specialists in its network to help combat these issues as early as possible.
Whether from an eating disorder, limited access to food, or an unhealthy diet combined with hormonal changes, health, and nutrition in teens can lead to weight conditions if the teen doesn’t have access to necessary medical help and education. At the Panther Clinic, staff can provide guidance and treatment for some of the most challenging conditions relating to nutrition and weight, setting your student on the path to health and wellness.
Vaccines and lab tests are also available at the Panther Clinic, assisting students, families, and staff with vital preventative care. Lack of access shouldn’t come between any individual and lifesaving vaccinations or lab work. The Panther Clinic can help address health care gaps and keep students and their families healthy in the long term.
CHP is proud to forge this partnership with the Belgrade School District to help spread access to healthcare throughout southwest Montana. The Panther Clinic will reopen this fall at the beginning of the school year. To make an appointment, call the clinic directly at 406.924.2478.