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AdventHealth partners with Flagler Schools to provide mental health fund, athletic trainers, more

Bunnell, Fla., July 21, 2021 — AdventHealth and Flagler Schools agreed to a 5-year partnership that represents a $750,000 commitment from the health system to provide a mental health fund for students, employ an athletic trainer for each of Flagler County’s two high schools and establish more classroom to career pathways for graduates.

“This agreement is the result of establishing a great partnership with AdventHealth,” said Flagler Schools Superintendent Cathy Mittelstadt. “This will enable our students to have access to much-needed services targeting their physical and mental health.”

Ron Jimenez, chief executive officer of AdventHealth Palm Coast, said the agreement represents new access to much needed services for families in Flagler County. The organization will provide $10,000 a year for five years to pay for new ways to help identify students in need of early intervention as well as mental health services for students and their families.

“Our commitment, through our mental health fund, will help our schools identify students who could benefit from services and make those services more accessible,” Jimenez said. “At AdventHealth, we take care of the whole person – not just the body, but also the mind and spirit. That is even more crucial in today’s stressful world.”

AdventHealth will also provide athletic trainers for Flagler-Palm Coast High School and Matanzas High School, an estimated $500,000 commitment. The health system will help establish enhanced services for school athletic programs including concussion protocols and testing, pre-participation physical with screenings for cardiac abnormalities and training for employees and volunteers on the use of CPR and AEDs.

“Cardiac screenings are just one of the enhanced services proven to save lives, and we are proud to bring this level of state-of-the-art care to Flagler’s student athletes,” said Erik Nason, sports medicine manager for AdventHealth.

AdventHealth and Flagler Schools also aim to establish more career opportunities for graduates such as coaching programs, job fairs and more.

The partnership, in total, represents a $750,000 commitment from AdventHealth to the school district.

“The Flagler County Education Foundation and Flagler County Schools are excited to partner with AdventHealth to make a difference in the lives of our students and their families,” said Joe Rizzo, executive director of the foundation. “Community partners are becoming increasingly important to the success of our students and our schools.”

David Ottati, chief executive officer of AdventHealth hospitals in Flagler, Lake and Volusia counties, said the agreement also symbolizes the health system’s commitment to Flagler families as construction is about to begin on AdventHealth’s second hospital in the county.

AdventHealth Palm Coast Parkway, a $100 million project near Bridgehaven Drive, will break ground in September and is scheduled to open in early 2023, joining AdventHealth Palm Coast to provide additional convenience and comprehensive care, including world-class orthopedics services.

AdventHealth Palm Coast Parkway is expected to provide 400 new jobs, and that figure is expected to grow to as many as 700 with an average salary of $67,000.

“This partnership with Flagler Schools is just one more way we hope to serve this community and let families here know we are here for them – to help take care of their personal health as well as contribute to the economic well-being of the whole community.”