One of the things we love most about being a part of the Greensboro community is the opportunity to work with our neighbors. And while our work has spanned the East Coast, the majority of our clients live right in the heart of Greensboro and share one of the most important things: community. 

In some instances, we have the opportunity to collaborate on shared projects that bridge two or more of our clients, forming our own little ecosystem within the much larger scale of work we do. Such is the case for school-based telehealth, the innovative joint project between Cone Health and Guilford County Schools. School-based telehealth addresses chronic absenteeism and supports student success by making health care more accessible. Picture a clinic inside a school, where students can receive care from an on-site Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) while also being connected virtually to their parents at work and a Cone Health physician, who works from their office at the Rice Center for Child and Adolescent Health. 

It’s a great example of one client (GCS) working  to tackle a nationwide issue in education by partnering with another client (Cone Health), whose community-engaged work uses the health system’s strengths to address  issues connected to health.

Currently, in schools across America, if a child becomes ill, they often must leave school for ailments that can be addressed right in school. The child misses class. And the parent leaves work — a real problem for parents working hourly jobs. Time away means wages lost.

Telehealth allows the child to be treated right where they are and sent back to class, ready to learn. It keeps parents at their jobs, and families out of the ER. Plus the technology is impressive, often allowing for a more detailed appointment and more eyes on the patient, thanks to high-tech tools and the coordinated care between the CMA and the Cone Health doctor.

Cone Health and GCS want to introduce telehealth in Guilford County’s 51 Title I schools — those defined as institutions in which at least 52% of student families are low-income. In Title I schools, chronic absenteeism — defined as missing 10% of instructional time or more — is a concern, setting students behind academically and causing families a host of stressors. 

Tigermoth is proud to help share the story of collaborative efforts to address challenges like these. Serving as a support partner as Cone Health and GCS combine their strengths to meet the needs of our community positions us to weave our knowledge of each organization into one compelling narrative. We have the privilege of not only bearing witness to the work they’re doing, but helping share their voices and build support for innovative work happening right here in Guilford County.

Andrea Crossley Spencer is Co-founder and Director of Creative Writing at Tigermoth Creative. Her 20-year copywriting career spans advertising agencies and higher education, with a focus on brand messaging and fundraising. A fiction writer on the side, Andrea is represented by Copps Literary Services. She teaches writing workshops to young writers in local schools.