Photo by Kirby Neumann-Rea
LYNNE FROST, left, welcomes visitors to the Student Based Health Center in its grand opening last year.
Long before she came to work at One Community Health (OCH), Lynne Frost believed strongly in a School-Based Health Center for her community. After all, research shows healthy kids are better positioned to learn and excel. Realizing this, Frost took the initiative to improve access to quality health care services in her back yard. She created what’s now become Hood River Valley High School’s School-Based Health Center (SBHC), the success of which is now being praised by the Oregon Health Authority, which just recognized Frost with its “2016 SBHC Rising Star Award.”
The honor, announced in early November, casts a spotlight on Frost’s role as a catalyst for positive change. It recognizes her leadership efforts as the Administrator and Medical Director for the SBHC, located onsite at the high school and operated by One Community Health. However, for Frost, it more accurately reflects and celebrates the spirit of significant collaboration, considering the proactive commitment of the many partners and team members who have joined Frost over the years in addressing this critical community need.
“This award is really about all the people who helped make the SBHC a reality,” Frost said. “It was certainly a team effort, with so many people helping in various ways, sharing their talents, their time and other resources to make it a reality. I’m very honored to have worked and to still be working with so many gifted and passionate people, from those who’ve endorsed and supported our efforts in so many ways to those who are actively working at the SBHC and serving our area’s students.”
As outlined in a recent statement by Oregon Health Authority’s Jessica E.A. Duke, manager of the Adolescent & School Health Program, “Lynne has worked tirelessly to build strong partnerships to build a sustainable, comprehensive model for their SBHC and has built trust with community providers to finally accept a SBHC in their community after eight years from their first planning grant.”
For example, Frost has spearheaded many youth-friendly SBHC projects in just the first year of opening the SBHC, including: a radio ad done by students, an exterior and interior mural, an Eagle Scout project for landscaping, a wheelchair ramp to accommodate students, collaborating with the school district on various improvements and communications, and, when the time is right, the possibility to move forward with opening a new SBHC in the county.
As part of its mission to advance health and social justice for all people, One Community Health has supported the SBHC as a natural extension of its services. According to Dave Edwards, OCH’s CEO, the Rising Star Award sheds light on not just an individual who is an obvious champion but also her team and the organization behind them, all of whom are passionate about seeing this mission manifest in tangible, practical and effective ways.
“I’m really proud of Lynne, her team and this organization, which allows people to follow their professional passions, live their values through their work, and make an impact for the better,” Edwards said. “The level of commitment here is very high, even extraordinary. We’re grateful to have Lynne and her team onboard and for the ongoing support of the community that’s recognized the significance of what they’re doing.”