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J Adolesc Health. 2010 Mar;46(3):251-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2009.07.002. Epub 2009 Aug 28.

Impact of School-Based Health Center use on academic outcomes.

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School of Medicine, Division of Public Behavioral Health & Justice Policy, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington 98102, USA.



The purpose of this study was twofold: (1) to examine the effects of School-Based Health Center (SBHC) use on academic outcomes for high school students, using a well-controlled, longitudinal model, and (2) to examine whether SBHC medical and mental health service use differentially impacts academic outcomes.


Analyses used a latent variable growth curve modeling approach to examine longitudinal outcomes over five school semesters for ninth grade SBHC users and nonusers from Fall 2005 to Fall 2007 (n = 2,306). Propensity score analysis was used to control for self-selection factors in the SBHC user and nonuser groups.


Results indicated a significant increase in attendance for SBHC medical users compared to nonusers. Grade point average increases over time were observed for mental health users compared to nonusers. Discipline incidents were not found to be associated with SBHC use.


SBHC use was associated with academic improvements over time for a high-risk group of users. The moderating effect of type of use (medical and mental health) reinforces the importance of looking at subgroups when determining the impact of SBHC use on outcomes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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