They say It takes a village to raise a family, and in this case, it takes a village to keep your kids healthy.
For the past six years the Southwestern District Health Unit has been working with the elementary Schools in Dickinson, ND and tending to the students’ general health needs with its School Nurse program.
“The things they help support us with are to administer meds, in the front office for any students that need medication, they do vision screening for us, and they help write medical plans,” said Nicole Weiler, Prairie Rose Elementary principal.
They also assist the schools with immunizations, health education, communicable diseases, and Unlicensed Assistive Personnel training.
Amelia Dustin, who is a UAP at Prairie Rose Elementary, said she helps students with chronic health conditions like diabetes, cancer, and seizure disorders.
She was appointed to the position by Weiler and had to be trained by a nurse with the Southwestern District Health Unit.
“We do a four-hour training course then we wait until they are on the registry, which is through the North Dakota Board of nursing. Then there is a week of on the job training,” said Kathy Leier, RN Southwestern District Health Unit.
Leier works with the six elementary schools in Dickinson and said the program assists her so she doesn’t have to be tied down to one school all day.
“It gives me more time to serve the general health of the school district,” said Leier.
Principal Weiler said the program is efficient and successful because schools aren’t reliant on one individual to maintain the general health of the students.
“The best part about it we are trained, so we are trained in any situation that might come up on any given day with our kids”.
Leier said the School Nurse program is primarily for the elementary schools in Dickinson, but they will assist and help any school that needs them.