Tuesday, September 1, 2015 - 12:04pm
It's a great time for an annual well-child exam

     You may remember that during the first few years of your child’s life, you scheduled and attended many exams for them. These exams are called well-child exams (or sometimes referred to as an “annual physical,” “well-baby exam,” or “HealthCheck”). Did you know that the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children and adolescents up to the age 21 receive a well-child exam every year?

     A well-child exam is a physical and medical assessment of a child when he/she is not sick. They are incredibly important for preventing and screening for illness, disease and developmental delays. They are also a great opportunity for you to raise questions and concerns that you may have regarding your child’s development, behavior and well-being.

     Did you know that most insurance plans will cover the cost of the entire exam—with no copay? Some also offer incentives to encourage you to schedule the exam.  Assistance is available to help you find a provider in your network and will help arrange the appointment.

     Scheduling an annual well-child exam is an important way to keep your child healthy. We recommend that well-child exams be performed at your child’s primary care provider’s office.

     If your teen has a sports physical every year, please remember: a well-child exam can serve as a child’s sports physical, but a sports physical cannot replace a well-child exam. A sports physical just checks to ensure that your child is capable to participate in a particular sport. A well-child exam is much more comprehensive.

   Annual well-child exams also help keep children and adolescents on schedule for their immunizations. This is particularly beneficial for students that need to meet the requirements for the 7th and 12th grade immunizations. 

     If you'd like to help promote well-child exams in your clinic or to fellow parents, please check out our resource page for free materials. 


 The mission of the West Virginia School-Based Health Assembly (WVSBHA) is to advance comprehensive health care in school settings through responsive policies, practices, and partnerships. Formed in 1995, WVSBHA serves as the lead membership organization and unified voice in the state for the advancement of school-based health care.

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Through collaboration of individuals and organizations that represent and support school-based health centers and services, WVSBHA supports the belief that all West Virginia children and youth have a fundamental right to access and receive comprehensive primary health care and prevention services. 

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