HAZARD — Roy G. Eversole Elementary was one of 100 schools, and first in Perry County, to be selected for the FLUency Program by Kinsa. Teachers and parents participating in the program received free Kinsa thermometers for their smart phones. Staff at Roy G. Eversole hopes the program will help keep children healthy.
“The way we are using it, we have participation in a program that Kinsa is offering. It is called the FLUency program. We have a school group and anyone from our school who joins the group gets a free thermometer. They can come into the group and it will show how many people have recorded a high temperature or a symptom. It will also show what is common,” said Roy G. Eversole Kindergarten Teacher Jackie Cornett.
Some of the symptoms the app shows is how many parents recorded that their kids have the cough, fatigue, high temperatures, and other symptoms. Parents can share messages on the Kinsa app. They can also post their child’s symptoms anonymously or they can include their name on the post. Cornett said that everything is anonymous unless parents want their name associated with posts.
“It really helps parents to kind of see what is going around and what symptoms are prevalent so they know that this might be serious and need to go to the doctor or it is just a virus we can wait it out,” said Cornett.
The program started in October and has 211 members participating currently, and once the school reaches Kinsa’s goal of 50 percent, every family that has a thermometer will get a free virtual doctors visit. The school is currently at 44 percent.
The virtual doctor visit consists of either a physician, therapist or a dietitian. Families can log onto their smart phones and receive the doctor visit.
Cornett had the thermometer in her home for a little over a year, and she follows what Kinsa is doing. When she was pre-ordering Kinsa’s new ear thermometer online, she saw that they were taking applications for the FLUency program for schools.
“I thought that would be great for our school. It would be a great opportunity, so I nominated our school and then I shared it on Facebook,” said Cornett.
Over 30 parents and faculty nominated the school. When Cornett did a phone interview with a representative with Kinsa, she told Cornett that was the most nominations for one school that they have ever gotten.
“They were really impressed with the community involvement, just in the application process alone. I think that was one of the reasons that they were eager to take us into the program and eager to accept us,” Cornett said.
Cornett said that it is helping parents be involved in seeing what types of illness that are going around and be able to see when something is going around.
With all of the safety concerns, Cornett said that she doesn’t see a lot of parents coming around like she used too. Now, Cornett said, parents are not in the school as much as they used too because of safety concerns. The Kinsa app is instrumental in allowing parents to keep track of what types of illnesses that are going around the school.
“I just feel like its been a really good program for us and we are hoping that it will help keep the kids a little healthier. Our goal for is for it to improve the health of the school and help with the attendance,” said Cornett.
TJ Caudill can be reached at 606-436-5771 or on Twitter @HazardHerald.