Manet Community Health Center (Manet) is set to open a school-based health center (SBHC) this fall to deliver comprehensive primary care, urgent same-day care and integrated behavioral health services to students, families, faculty and staff of Taunton Public Schools. The clinic will be located on the Taunton Public Schools campus at 60 Williams Street, adjacent to the John F. Parker Middle School and Taunton High School. Construction is currently under way and a ribbon cutting ceremony is planned for Friday, November 3 at 10 a.m. Manet Community Health at Taunton Public Schools (Manet at TPS) will open to patients this fall, pending final inspections and licensing from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH).
“As a federally qualified health center, Manet exists to deliver comprehensive, quality care that is accessible and equitable. Offering our services on the Taunton Public Schools campus ensures barrier-free access for patients,” explains Manet Chief Executive Officer Cynthia Sierra. “We cannot overstate the importance and value we place on our relationship with Superintendent Cabral and our Taunton Public Schools colleagues, who have been instrumental in every step of our planning, and we are extremely grateful for and encouraged by the support we’ve received from the School Committee and the City of Taunton. We look forward with anticipation to opening our doors to welcome students this new school year.”
Manet at TPS will be a fully licensed, independent health center offering a full range of programs and services, including primary care, behavioral health (in person and telehealth), health insurance navigation, physicals, immunizations, health assessments (for schools, sports and employment), referrals to specialists, care coordination, treatment of acute injuries, lab tests and screening, oral health and vision evaluations, nutrition counseling, health education, and urgent/same-day care. The clinic will initially operate during the school year, during school hours, with the opportunity to expand according to demand. It will be staffed by a nurse practitioner, a behavioral health clinician and a community health specialist and will offer visits by appointment and walk-in.
Responding to the expressed need for a SBHC in Taunton, Manet submitted a proposal to the MDPH and received approval in April of 2022 to commence planning for the project. The project design is complete and construction is under way. The project is funded, in part, with a Manet Community Health at Taunton Public Schools grant from the MDPH and from Taunton Public Schools via American Recue Plan Act and Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund.
“We are embarking on an exciting new chapter for Taunton Public Schools that will foster healthier and more engaged learning communities,” expressed Superintendent John J. Cabral. “Our partnership with Manet Community Health will provide our students, their families, and our staff with comprehensive, accessible healthcare services right on our campus. This schoolbased health center is not just about treating illnesses; it promotes well-being and preventative care. As we look to the future, this kind of holistic support will play a crucial role in equipping our students to succeed academically and in all areas of life. The support we have received from the city of Taunton, the School Committee, and Manet, led by CEO Cynthia Sierra, has been overwhelmingly positive. We’re all eager to open the doors to this vital new resource as we welcome our students for the new school year.”
Manet, which currently operates six primary care locations in Quincy, Hull, Taunton and Attleboro, opened its first site in Taunton at 1 Washington Street in 2014. The site now sees more than 4,400 patients per year in nearly 19,000 visits, and is open Monday through Saturday with evening hours on Mondays and Wednesdays. The Washington Street location is open to patients of the Manet SBHC as needed.