It is important to properly manage the medications your child needs while in school. There are a few important things to keep in mind to make sure everything is covered, from transporting, storing, administering and identification. Here is what you need to know:
What to Do:
- First, the best way to keep your child’s at-home and in-school medications organized is by having the physician or pharmacist divide the medication in half. Have one bottle to keep at home and the other to bring to school. Doing this will decrease any possible confusion and will also allow the bottles to be properly labeled. Medication in school must be in its original bottle with proper labels; no medicine should be given to the school in an envelope or baggie.
- Another thing to keep in mind that may seem obvious is that all medication needs to have a written authorization from the doctor, as well as the parent, giving consent to the school to administer the medication (vitamins included). Be sure to contact the school about any forms that must be filled out to document consent. By doing this, instructions on how often the medication is given, the dosage, and how it should be administered are shared.
- Next, make sure that the medication is transported and handed to the school by the parent/guardian. Unless the child is responsible enough to do this on their own, all medication should go from the parent directly to the nurse’s office. During school hours, children should not be carrying the medication around unless told to do so by their pediatrician.
- Once in the hands of the school, you the parent, should have no worries. School personnel receive special training on how to take care of and administer medication. In the case where the medication expires or is unused, it will be returned to the parent/ guardian. For special events like field trips, either consult with your child’s doctor to see if the medication can be taken at another time, or confirm with the school that the medication will be taken on the trip.