School health services in Flanders: a new concept

The Flemish School Health Services (SHS) consist, since the Law of 1964, of a preventive healthcare network, within which Youth Health Care for schoolchildren (3 to 19 years) was carried out until recently. For the same target group, but to a large extend separately organised, support was provided by the Psycho-Medical-Social (PMS) services on the level of psychological and social functioning, learning and studying and the process of study choice. The actual vision on pupil's guidance, both from a social-medical and from psycho-pedagogical point of view, requires the integration of both services into one transparent and recognisable structure. With the creation of Pupil Guidance Centres (PGC), the Flemish Health Administration tried to comply with this new challenge. The core ideas for the functioning of these new centres are: - The health and well-being of the pupil is essential; - The work is principally demand-oriented, with the exception of the basic program of preventive healthcare; - Special attention is paid to risks and to risk groups; - Action in the neighbourhood of the schools is targeted; - Guidance is based on interdisciplinary collaboration and networking. Along with the creation of the Pupil Guidance Centres, a general program of preventive healthcare for schoolchildren was also brought up to date. The Pupil Guidance Centres have been operational since September 1st 2000 and, with a trial period of three years; the new functions are gradually been applied.
Category: Review
Volume: Vol. 46, No 4, october - december 2002
Authors: K. Hoppenbrouwers
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