Use of Auto Injectors

  • Use and Possession of Asthma Inhalers and Epinephrine Auto-Injectors

    The Board shall permit students to possess asthma inhalers and Epinephrine Auto-Injectors (“EpiPens”), and to self-administer the prescribed medication when such is parent authorized.

    Possession and use of asthma inhalers and EpiPens by students shall be in accordance with state law and Board policy.

    Asthma inhaler shall mean a prescribed device used for self-administration of short-acting metered doses of prescribed medication to treat an acute asthma attack.

    Self-administration shall mean a student’s use of medication in accordance with a prescription or written instructions from a physician, certified registered nurse practitioner or physician assistant.
    Before a student may possess or use an asthma inhaler or EpiPen during school hours, the Board shall require the following:

    • A written request from the parent/guardian that the Intermediate Unit comply with the order of the physician, certified registered nurse practitioner or physician assistant.
    • A statement from the parent/guardian acknowledging that the Intermediate Unit is not responsible for ensuring that the medication is taken, and relieving the Intermediate Unit and its employees of responsibility for the benefits or consequences of the prescribed medication.
    • A written statement from the student’s physician, certified registered nurse practitioner or physician assistant that states:
      • Name of drug.
      • Prescribed dosage.
      • Times medication is to be taken.
      • Length of time medication is prescribed.
      • Diagnosis or reason medication is needed, unless confidential.
      • Potential serious reaction or side effects of medication.
      • Emergency response.
      • If student is qualified and able to self-administer the medication.
      • The student shall be made aware that the asthma inhaler or EpiPen is intended for his/her use only and may not be shared with other students.

    The student shall notify the school nurse/designee immediately following each use of an asthma inhaler or EpiPen.

    Violations of this policy by a student shall result in immediate confiscation of the asthma inhaler and medication and EpiPen, and loss of privileges. In addition, parents will be notified of the loss of privileges and that the asthma inhaler or EpiPen will be stored in an accessible location near the student. The teachers will be notified of the location and will be provided access thereto. Use other than as intended for specific student will lead to discipline and/or criminal charges.

    The Intermediate Unit reserves the right to require a statement from the physician, certified registered nurse practitioner or physician assistant for the continued use of a medication beyond the specified time period. Permission for possession and use of an asthma inhaler by a student shall be effective for the school year for which it is granted and shall be renewed each subsequent school year.

    A student whose parent/guardian completes the written requirements for the student to possess an asthma inhaler or EpiPen and self-administer the prescribed medication in the school setting shall demonstrate to the school nurse the capability for self-administration and responsible behavior in use of the medication.

    To self-administer medication the student must be able to:

    • Respond to and visually recognize his/her name.
    • Identify his/her medication.
    • Demonstrate the proper technique for self-administering medication.
    • Sign his/her medication sheet to acknowledge having taken the medication.
    • Demonstrate a cooperative attitude in all aspects of self-administration
      The Board shall permit its school physician to prescribe, via standing orders, EpiPens in the name of the Intermediate Unit, to be maintained for use as described herein. The supply of EpiPens shall be maintained in a safe, secure location at all times. The school nurse assigned to each building shall be responsible for the storage and use of the EpiPens, and shall be trained by the Department of Health.

    The Board shall permit a trained nurse or school employee to provide an EpiPen that meets the student’s prescription on file, or the Intermediate Unit physician’s standing orders:

    • to a student who is authorized to self-administer the EpiPen
    • by administering the EpiPen to him/her; or
    • by administering an EpiPen per the Intermediate Unit’s standing orders to a student the employee, in good faith, believes to be having an anaphylactic reaction.
    • The Executive Director or designee, in conjunction with Intermediate Unit nurses, shall develop procedures for student possession of asthma inhalers and EpiPens and self-administration of prescribed medicine.

    The Intermediate Unit shall annually inform staff, students and parents/guardians about the policy and procedures governing student possession and use of asthma inhalers and EpiPens.

    When an asthma inhaler or EpiPen is initially brought to an Intermediate Unit program by a student, the school/Intermediate Unit nurse shall be responsible to complete the following:

    • Obtain the required written request and statements from the parent/guardian and physician, certified registered nurse practitioner or physician assistant, and these shall be kept in the office of the:Building Administrator Intermediate Unit/School Nurse
    • Review pertinent information with the student and/or parent/guardian, specifically the information contained on the statement submitted by the physician, certified registered nurse practitioner or physician assistant.
    • Determine the student’s ability to self-administer medication and the need for care and supervision.
    • Maintain an individual medication log for all students possessing asthma inhalers or EpiPens.