Milton Hershey School Health Center Provides for Daily Needs During Pandemic
Featuring Jamie Byerly, MHS Director of Nursing and Medical Services
At Milton Hershey School, students’ medical, dental, psychological, behavioral, and social work needs are met on campus at the Health Center by licensed professionals. MHS cares for the whole child free of charge thanks to our founders, Milton and Catherine Hershey who believed providing for a student’s daily needs is essential to their success.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, MHS has continued to see a diverse range of students with health care needs. MHS has developed a Health and Safety Plan based on the Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines and recommendations from the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH).
“The Health Center has restricted all visitation to protect students and staff,” Jamie Byerly, MHS Director of Nursing and Medical Services, said. “We have converted the Health Center to have negative pressure rooms to pull air out of the rooms and move it outside. This has increased the cycling of fresh air into the Health Center.”
MHS also has implemented a Health Center mitigation strategy in conjunction with the CDC and DOH, utilizing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Students remain in their private rooms and the common areas have been restricted where cross-contamination can occur. Staff and students wear masks at all times and practice proper social distancing.
“MHS has done an amazing job at keeping our students safe,” Byerly said. “With over 2,000 students on campus, there is no community spread of any illness.”
MHS has continued to partner with Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center to ensure students are attending their off-campus appointments virtually with their specialists.
The CDC has supported Milton Hershey School’s efforts for student and staff safety and mitigation strategies provided in the MHS Health and Safety Plan.