For Parents: Health Center

Welcome to Bement’s Health Office.  Suzanne Martino, R.N., our director of health services, is available on campus, Monday through Friday, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.   She can be reached at 413-774-7061, ext. 102 or by email at


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Winter time is cold and flu season! If your child is feeling under the weather, please consider their overall energy level and ability to participate in classes and follow the Family Handbook guidelines for a return to school after illness (pg. 37). If your child has been diagnosed with an illness by a doctor or health clinic, or if your child is prescribed medication that needs to be dispensed during school hours, please let our Health Office know by emailing Mrs. Martino ( Thank you!



Bryant Benson, M.D.
Director of Medical Services
Deerfield Academy Health Center

Suzanne Martino, R.N.
Director of Health Services
The Bement School
phone 413-774-7061 | fax 413-774-7863



Automatic External Defibrillator (AED)

Bement’s AED is housed in an alarmed, wall-mounted cabinet inside the main entrance to the Kittredge Building. A sign on the outside of the building indicates that the AED is located inside the main door to the building.

Faculty and staff receive CPR/AED training provided by Life Support Systems. In addition to this training, Life Support Systems also provides semi-annual service inspections and on-site emergency service calls to maintain the AED in a ready state.


In recent years, there has been an increasing awareness of the rising incidence and long-term consequence of concussions in school sports. To improve education and prevention, Bement has implemented a concussion management program in collaboration with our Medical Director and guided by Massachusetts Department of Public Health regulations. Our primary goal is to improve awareness and prevention of head injuries and concussions in our middle school population. In the event of a head injury, we hope to improve reporting of these injuries, as well as rest from school and sports, so that students are evaluated promptly and receive the appropriate follow-up to minimize long-term effects of concussions.

Concussion Education

Understanding what a concussion is and how to recognize it is the foundation of any concussion management program. This is important for both parents and students. Two excellent courses are available online. Please take the time to watch either of the courses listed below with your child. We really like the NFHS course. It requires registration and is a little confusing to access but keep trying. Both are good courses and both are free.

1) NFHS Course:

2) Centers for Disease Control course:

Concussion Management Plan

Students who sustain a head injury during a school sponsored event (practice, game, recess) will be referred to the appropriate Healthcare Provider for evaluation and treatment. Parents of day students will be contacted by Bement school staff and brought either to their healthcare provider or the nearest emergency room according to the severity of the injury. Boarding students will be evaluated at the Deerfield Academy Health Center or sent to the nearest emergency room according to the severity of their injury. Communication between parents, teachers, coaches, athletic director and the director of health services is key to a successful and quick recovery.

When a student sustains a concussion, that student may need some help. The student should speak with a dean of students daily to assess whether symptoms of concussion are affecting academic work and to strategize how to proceed. A concussed student may require leeway in completing academic assignments.

As time progresses, the deans of students, along with the medical director or the student’s primary care provider will help the student determine what accommodations are appropriate on a course-by-course basis and when those accommodations are no longer necessary.

A dean of students will administer the rate at which students resume full academic engagement. The full concussion plan is available in the Family Handbook and you may contact the health office with any questions.

No student who sustains a concussion will be allowed to return to sports until they have been cleared, in writing, by a physician and have completed a return to play protocol without return of their symptoms.

Students who sustain a concussion at a sporting event outside of Bement must also be cleared by their physician and complete the return to play protocol before they return to their sport at Bement.


When counseling is deemed necessary for boarders, a consult will be arranged with the director of psychological services. In certain cases, day students may be referred to the director of psychological services for evaluation and referral. Parents will be billed directly for psychological services. Many health plans cover some portion of counseling costs.

Epinephrine Auto-Injectors (EpiPens)

Students with severe allergies will have epinephrine available to them when they are at school. Students will bring their own EpiPen to school with documentation from their primary care provider. In addition, the school will stock EpiPens in the dining hall and with the school nurse. Parents are asked to notify the school nurse if there are any changes in their child’s EpiPen dosage or needs.

Faculty and staff will be notified of any students with life-threatening allergies to foods or stinging insects by the school nurse based on information provided by parents on their child’s health form.

Faculty and staff will be trained and certified in EpiPen administration yearly by the school nurse. This certification covers faculty and staff to administer an EpiPen to an allergic student who has been exposed to their allergen and is showing signs of anaphylaxis. Faculty and staff may administer the student’s own EpiPen or the school’s stock EpiPen, whichever is closer to the student at the time of the reaction.

Lower school students’ EpiPens are stored in the lower school head’s office and in the dining hall. Students with bee or wasp allergies will have a second set of EpiPens that stay with the PE teachers.

Upper school students’ EpiPens are stored in the administrative assistant’s desk, and students with food allergies have a second EpiPen in the dining hall. Students with bee or wasp allergies have a second set that stays with their coach for sports.

Health Insurance

The Bement School requires that every student be covered by a comprehensive health insurance plan. Health insurance policies issued in another country or from a company outside the United States will not be accepted. Please check your insurance plan to determine what will be covered for your child while at school. Please contact the business office if you have questions about insurance coverage.

Medical and Nursing Care

A part-time nurse provides daily health services to day and boarding students at Bement. When the school nurse is not on campus, the nurses at the Deerfield Academy Health Center may be consulted for health issues. Parents will be notified if a student becomes ill or injured at school. Because the majority of students at Bement are day students, most will see their own healthcare provider for routine health issues.

Boarding students may receive out-patient medical care at the Deerfield Academy Health Center from either the physician or nurse practitioner on staff.

In-patient care is available to boarders who require evening or weekend care. Student insurance may be charged for in-patient care, lab tests, medications, radiology, and other services provided by the Health Center or outside providers. Student accounts will be charged for services not covered by insurance.

Emergency care will be provided by Baystate Franklin Medical Center in Greenfield, MA. If necessary, students will be transported by ambulance.

All families should notify the Health Office when a diagnosis occurs, particularly of contagious illnesses such as influenza, chicken pox, strep, or similar ailments.

Medical Leave

Medical leaves might include those for severe or prolonged illnesses, significant injuries, especially those requiring major surgery, or psychological problems, including depression or eating disorders. A medical leave can be voluntary or required.

The director of health services convenes a Leave Committee, consisting of the division head, dean of students, and the student’s advisor or classroom teacher, to determine the timing of and criteria for the student’s return to school. While the student is on medical leave, the director of health services and/or director of psychological services will work with the family and, when appropriate, the attending physician or psychologist at home. The Leave Committee will receive updates of the status of the student while away on medical leave and, at the appropriate time, will assess the readiness of the student to return from medical leave. Informed by a recommendation of the Leave Committee, the decision concerning the return from medical leave will be determined by the head of school.

The degree of impact of a medical leave on a student’s academic status will vary with the amount of class time missed, the timing in the academic calendar, and the point in the student’s Bement career. Bement will take steps to help the student make up missed work and, when appropriate, to adjust expectations about the work necessary to complete a given course.


At school, the director of health services gives medications to students after review of the health form and contact with parents when appropriate.

When the director of health services is not on campus, the nurses at Deerfield Academy Health Center will be contacted for medication issues. Dorm parents will consult the nurses at Deerfield Academy Health Center before administering medication to boarders.

No students, day or boarding, may have medications (including cough drops), vitamins, or supplements in their possession without the express permission of the director of health services. All medications, including Epi pens and inhalers, must be brought to the director of health services who will ensure they are available to the student as needed.

All medications, including EpiPens and inhalers, must be brought to the director of health services who will ensure they are available to the student as needed.

Prescription medication must be in its original container from the pharmacy with the prescription label clearly visible.

A medication order from the prescribing clinician must be on file in the student’s chart.

All medications must be labeled in English.

Day families are strongly encouraged to notify the director of health services when medications are prescribed or dosages are changed on medications given at home.

Off-Sports Requests

Students and parents will direct requests for permission to be off-sports due to any medical reason to the Health Office. Please notify the director of health services if your child has sustained an injury that warrants not participating in practice or in a game.

The nurse may ask for a doctor’s note if she deems it necessary.

Students must see the nurse before 10:00 a.m. to give coaches enough time to plan if an off-sports request is verified. Phone calls home after 10:00 a.m. will be for emergency purposes only.

All students will go to practice. (please indent the two bullet points below)

    • If a student is experiencing mild symptoms (headache, upset stomach, a cold) the student will go to practice and watch with their team.

    • If the student does not feel well enough to do this, Bement will ask the parent to pick up the student due to illness.

If students request a non-medical off-sports, they must speak with the athletic director and coach, and either may grant an off-sports excuse.

If a student is given off-sports the day before a game, the coach will have discretion over whether or not that student plays the game.

All students diagnosed with a concussion by their doctor will not participate in any sports, recess, or physical activity until cleared by a doctor’s order. All schoolwork will be assigned per doctor’s orders; please forward these orders to the Health Office.

Once the Health Office learns of a concussion, the Concussion Plan will be sent home explaining the process with moving forward.

Required Health Forms

Each year, families must provide updated health information regarding their children’s health status in case a student should require the services of the director of health services or the Health Center.

These forms are emailed in the spring and are available on the school’s website and provide vital information from parents and from the student’s healthcare provider about chronic illnesses, past surgeries, immunization status, current medications as well as allergies to food, medications or stinging insects. Whether your child is a day student or a boarder, new or returning, certain health forms are required each year.

Students may not begin the school year until the required forms have been completed and received. Late fees will be charged for incomplete health forms.

Students may not participate in co-curricular activities of any kind, including field trips, PE, and sports, until all required health forms are complete and on file in the Health Office.

If insurance information is not available, parents are responsible for the full payment of services and for contacting the insurance provider for reimbursement.

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts requires that all new students (grades K through 9) and all returning fourth and seventh graders have a physical exam within twelve months of the start of school. The Bement School recommends an annual well-child visit with the student’s healthcare provider.

Return to School After Illness

If a day student is absent, a parent or guardian should call Bement to inform the school of the nature of the student’s absence. Students who become ill
or injured during the school day will be assessed as to whether they are able
to complete the day. Parents will be contacted in the event their child needs
to be dismissed early due to illness or injury.

Please note the following guidelines regarding illness and returning to school:

For vomiting and diarrhea – students need to be 24 hours past their last episode of vomiting or diarrhea and able to tolerate a reasonable diet. Students who vomit or have multiple episodes of diarrhea at school will be sent home.

For fevers – students need to be fever-free (99.9°F or less) for
24 hours without the assistance of acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Students with a temp of 100°F or higher at school will be sent home.

For strep throat, bronchitis, pneumonia, or ear infections requiring antibiotics – students need to be on antibiotics for at least 24 hours and be fever-free. Students who will need a dose of antibiotic during school hours must bring the original labeled bottle from the pharmacy to the director of health services.

For any illness your children may be having – please consider their overall energy level and ability to participate in classes and the busy Bement schedule.