Brief History Of School Nursing In North Carolina

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Phoebe Ann Pollitt PhD, Associate Professor (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:

Abstract: Within a decade of Lina Rogers Struthers becoming the first school nurse in the United States in 1902 in New York City, Percy Powers of Winston-Salem became the first school nurse in North Carolina. In 1911, the Wayside Workers of the Home Moravian Church, hired nurse Powers to do health inspection and follow-up work among the school children of East and West Salem schools. She measured height and weight, and screened for vision, dental problems, swollen tonsils and adenoids, and malnutrition. She also taught students and parents basic sanitation, nutrition and hygiene to prevent and control the spread of disease. On May 1, 1915, the NC State Board of Health organized the Medical Inspection of School Unit. Surveys of North Carolina schoolchildren revealed that 80% needed dental treatment , 10% had diseased throats, 5% had defective vision and/or hearing, and numerous others suffered from tuberculosis, malaria, hookworm, and malnutrition. The alarming results moved the state legislature to fund six full-time nurses to travel across the state and provide screening and follow-up services at three-year intervals for all students under the seventh grade, regardless of race.

Additional Information

Pollitt, P. (2018). "Brief History of School Nursing in North Carolina." Tar Heel Nurse, Spring 2018. Publisher version of record available at:
Language: English
Date: 2018
school nursing, North Carolina nursing, Lina Rogers Struthers, Percy Powers

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