Elizabeth Goldenberg is the Founder of Onespot Allergy and the Co-Founder of EpiCenter Medical. She also has a son starting a new school this fall. We are proud to share her proven steps on preparing school teachers and staff members for students with food allergies. Thanks, Elizabeth!
1. Complete the Authorization for Administration of Prescription Medication Form and the Individual Medical Emergency Plan form, or whatever forms your school requires for the identification of allergic students and authorization to inject epinephrine.
Go to the Principal’s office
2. Call the school principal to set up an appointment to discuss your school-wide and classroom-specific allergy safety needs. Usually you can get an appointment the week before school opens, when the school is being cleaned and readied.
Go to class, gym, lunch and get on the bus
3. Meet with the principal, school nurse, your child’s teacher, all his or her specialists (gym teacher, media center/librarian, art teacher, lunch room personnel) and school bus driver (if any) to discuss allergy safety.
Give the gear
4. Leave one auto injector at the school office, and perhaps one in the classroom.
5. Ensure that those caring for your child are trained in anaphylaxis first aid. Children age 12 or older should take the training course themselves to know how to recognize a reaction, when to use epinephrine for the best chance of survival, and what to do next.
Ensure your child is ready
6. Make sure your child is wearing 2 doses of epinephrine in a belt on the school bus and throughout the school day. You can call your pharmacy to ask that fresh inventory with the latest possible expiry date be obtained, prior to filling your prescription. These two auto injectors on your child should be the ones used first (you want people running TO your child to help him or her, not AWAY FROM your child to get medication). The other injectors in the office and classroom are for back up.
7. Relax and send your child off with a smile knowing that he or she is well prepared for a safe and happy year at school!
Ironically, the “Peanuts” kids look like they have a nut-free lunch packed and ready for school. (c) Charles Schultz