Increasing Equitable Care for Youth through Coordinated School Health

Nearly a quarter of the students in the U.S. education system have a chronic health condition, disability, or special healthcare need. Students living in poverty and those at risk for or with disabilities have higher rates of health issues and encounter more barriers to accessing appropriate health care than their peers. The reciprocal influences between health and education as critical social determinants for youth are well established and prompted the development of a comprehensive model of school‐based coordinated health, the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) model. A brief overview of (a) education‐related health issues experienced by students living in poverty and those at risk for or with disabilities, (b) access to health care, (c) the need for coordinated care, and (d) the WSCC model are provided. The WSCC model represents an unprecedented opportunity to increase equitable care for youth through coordinated school health.