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PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 2:59 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2005 11:21 am
Posts: 687
Location: Cobourg, ON
Hello everyone!
I have several questions regarding the implementation of Sabrina's law. It mandates regular training for teachers on anaphylaxis. I have been working with my school board to revise their anaphylaxis policy after Bill 3. The board has talked with the health unit about providing training and the health unit has stated that they have not been mandated to do it and wouldn't be able to. THere is always volunteers but that is difficult to organize and the board is concerned about using only volunteers. How could they be sure that the information was completely accurate and if it isn't who would be liable? Also finding enough willing volunteers for all schools in a board year after year could be very difficult.

Since my last meeting with the board, the new Ontario Anaphylaxis kit has come out. It is an excellent resource. A web based course on anaphylaxis was also developed for teachers. Does anyone know if this is the only training the government intended to support the implementation of Bill 3? If if is, how does everyone feel about inservice on anaphylaxis being done only over the internet? I am concerned that an internet course is not sufficient and should not replace a health professional, like a public health nurse, providing training in person. What if people have additional questions or don't learn to use an epipen properly from a video? If it is the same course used year after year, the message and interest might get lost as teachers complete it every year. I am interested in what other people think about this.

I have contacted my local MPP and the person who phoned me back did not know very much about the training for teachers.
I am meeting with my board again on Wednesday and would appreciate any feedback. Thanks.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 5:20 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2005 1:17 pm
Posts: 50
Location: Hamilton, Ontario
I agree that an internet course does not carry the same impact as a session with a real, knowledgeable person available to answer questions. I don't think that the online information emphasizes enough that an Epipen will do no harm - even to someone not experiencing an anaphylactic reaction. That information seems to calm a lot of fears people have about injecting someone. I am surprised the law would not stipulate how this procedure is to be carried out. I would prefer a unified approach across the province rather than leaving it up to various school boards.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2006 9:52 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:53 pm
Posts: 1454
Location: Canada
katec wrote:
Hello everyone!

If if is, how does everyone feel about inservice on anaphylaxis being done only over the internet?


Not good! I think that a nurse/healthcare professional should demonstrate and then the teachers should try it themselves with an epi-demonstrator. If it were me being trained, I wouldn't remember if someone told me how to do it, but I would if I tried to follow the instructions afterwards.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 7:45 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
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Location: Ottawa
I think it's about as good as learning CPR over the internet.
People need to handle the trainer and practice. It is stressful enough dealing with an emergency, it would be helpful if they were familiar with the tools.
We need to remember that in a school, the person administering the EpiPen may have to also attend to 20+ other students. No easy task!

Forgive me for sounding ignorant but can this not be incorporated into one of the PD days or that week before school starts?


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 10:25 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 1643
Location: Toronto
My oldest son is working to pay his way through college. One of his part-time jobs is teaching first aid/CPR and that includes epi-training. He works for the Life Saving Society of Canada. It's really not that expensive to bring someone in to teach the entire staff. Depending on the size of the school, they might need two or three sessions. And I'm talking about the entire first aid/CPR course. If they want to hire someone to teach *just* epi-pen. People pay about $100 each for the full course, but when a company or school sets it up as a course it is cheaper.

At my other son's school (elementary) I had a meeting with the prinicipal earlier this year. All staff (including office and caretakers and lunchroom supervisors) are trained on the epi-pen. Before school starts in September the principal has them show her how to use epi-pen.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 11:43 am 
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Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2005 11:21 am
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Location: Cobourg, ON
Timing is not the problem for our school board. Most schools have staff meetings and PD prior to school opening. The difficulty is finding someone qualified to do the training. I am disappointed that the province did not mandate health units to do this work to implement Bill 3 - they are in the business of health education and are established in every area of the province. Then training could have been uniform across the province in all schools by qualified health professionals.

I know there are various local groups in different communities who could do this training - the difficulty for boards is finding these organizations and getting them to train every school in Sept. in all areas of a school board. My understanding as well is that there has been no additional funds given to help boards pay for training such as a combined first aid / anaphylaxis course.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 02, 2006 2:42 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2005 8:55 pm
Posts: 412
Location: Vancouver, BC
I think that the training needs to be much more specific then just how to use the epipen. I give workshops on anaphylaxis to childcare providers, and I include a lot of information about what is happening inside the body when someone is having a reaction. I do this because I realized that unless I was really clear about the chemical reaction that was taking place, and how all the vessels were leaking fluid, and was really graphic about what was actually happening to the persons body, that the general public who weren't dealing with the idea of a loved one dying of this, could not really comprehend that milk or peanuts could cause death. Approaching it this way really makes them aware that they want to avoid the allergen, rather then just knowing what to in case of emergency. My workshop lasts two hours, and I am going to collaborate with a friend to make it even longer and include a section on how to teach the kids about anaphylaxis.

What I would like to propose to the Ministry of Education is that the same nurses who set up Individual Care Plans for children with recognized health issues (eg cerebral palsy, diabetes) in the schools be the ones responsible for setting up Individual Care Plans for kids with anaphylaxis. They would train certain staff members, probably the ones who are in charge of first aid in schools, in detail, and those staff would sign off that they are responsible in the school for that childs health concerns. This would be as well as having all the other staff trained on the epipen so they knew what to do in an emergency. The staff that had been signed off, however, would also be responsible for implementing the communication to ensure that parents of other kids are allergy aware, that lunch room protocol is followed, that unsafe situations are minimized, that substitutes are aware and trained on the epipen, etc.

If we asked that it be done this way it would mean that the children would have protection during recess and lunch, as well as during classtime, as teachers do not supervise at recess and lunch. This makes sense to me as those are the times that food is being eaten. The supervision aides and the school and student support workers have more flexability in their positions to be able to support kids with anaphylaxis.

In BC the teachers union says it is not part of their jobs to provide medical care. Until this sort of problem is figured out, I think kids with anaphylaxis are at risk because teachers are being told two different things. I am sure in a life or death situation most people would choose to give the epipen, but it might be confusing enough to cause some hesitation. I know my son has always been sent to the office if he is thought to be ill in any way, because it is the secretary who has the first aid training. I think we need clarification from the government about this.

I would also like to see Epipens or Twinjets in every school, whether there is a child identified with anaphylaxis attending or not, and Epipen/Twinjet trainers in every school.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2006 10:52 am 
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Location: Canada
That sounds like a really great workshop! getting graphic (or shall we say explaining the physiology of allergy) would be a good idea.


Last edited by Helen on Tue Dec 12, 2006 11:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2006 12:34 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:38 pm
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Location: Toronto
Quote:
I would also like to see Epipens or Twinjets in every school, whether there is a child identified with anaphylaxis attending or not, and Epipen/Twinjet trainers in every school.


I have a problem with this - and I think most schools would too. Who is qualified to make a diagnosis of anaphylactic shock in a child not known to have allergies? Many schools do NOT have nurses on site. And even those that do - I'm not sure a nurse is qualified to make a diagnosis. While I do feel there is very little risk with epinephrine - there is some risk. I don't think it's fair to the teachers or the students to drop this in the lap of educators. (Just my opinion.)


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 1:05 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2005 8:55 pm
Posts: 412
Location: Vancouver, BC
The reason that I think it is needed in the schools is that many parents with children with anaphylaxis do not provide the schools with an epipen. The reasons for this are hard for me to understand, but I know that it is true.

Many public places are now buying defibulators in case people have a heart attack, so this is along the same line, I think. It would be people on hand who would be diagnosing the heart attack and administering/using the defibulator.

I just want as many kids/people protected as possible, in as many ways possible. I think that the purpose of the forum, especially at this time when schools are really taking a look at it, is to use it as a tool to knock all our ideas around so that we come up with the Best Practices possible.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 11:15 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:39 pm
Posts: 1141
Location: saskatchewan, canada
I think the epipens should be there even if no students exist with known allergies. In the case of insect sting allergies...a child may have their first severe reaction while at school. Someone I know who has a sting allergy has provided her sons school with epipens just incase he is ever stung and has a reaction, because the mom is allergic. In many schools students eat whatever treats other parents send in, and there may be new foods in them (sesame, traces of new tree nut) and the child may have a first severe reaction to a new food at school as well.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 19, 2006 8:45 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2005 6:39 pm
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Location: Toronto
Thought I'd re-raise this thread - found this the other day. Nurses, teachers and principals often still seem unclear on issues such as training and liability. Think the Ontario Gov't should clarify in the fall.

http://www.cno.org/prac/yau/2005/12_sabrina.htm


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 26, 2006 7:55 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 24, 2006 3:18 pm
Posts: 9
Good morning to all....

I am a new user to this site and I cannot tell you what a resource this has really been for me. I am very excited to have a resources such as this one to refer to for future use :P I am still getting familiarized with the site and how to use it but I think it is coming along nicely :wink:

I am from northern Ontario and I am concerned about our school. We have a son that is 3.5 years old and has just been enrolled into the JK program which is a combined JK/SK class in a school that has just become Peanut/Nut free as of August 16th! It was almost by "fluke" that this happened. Long story there :x It is very exciting that we have Sabrina's Law to support our family in this challenge!

We are in a small community (700)which makes you think it would be a cinch getting the education out there however I am at a lose :roll: I have talked to our local grocery about a nut free/peanut free section in the store to help suppor the idea & he agreed to it :) , we would also like to put out some information in a flyer or letter form however worried about it's content too. We do not want to give people the wrong ideas. Our son also has allergies to fish and egg. We have a local health clinic and they are going to give a demonstration on how to use the Epi-pen :) . We have a major health program by our First Nation as well and I am encouraging them to put information out as well :) Non of this is confirmed however I am trying to be dilegent :wink: I must sound very negative however I am afraid. I am trying to be optimistic however I fear that the issue is not being taken seriously.

I am going to take a look at the information that was sent out to the schools and see what sort of help this is going to be. Thanks so much for the discussion.

Yoli


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 26, 2006 10:16 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6479
Location: Ottawa
Yoli-you don't sound negative at all. You sound as though you are doing a lot to inform others and get the products to keep your child safe.

_________________
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Daughter: asthma, allergies to egg, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, most legumes (not soy) & penicillin. Developing hayfever type allergies.
Husband: no allergies
Me: allergies to some tree that flowers in May
Cat: allergic to beef, pork and lamb


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 Post subject: On the streets....
PostPosted: Sun Aug 27, 2006 8:10 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 24, 2006 3:18 pm
Posts: 9
Susan:

Thanks so much! Some days I feel as though I am going to drown in this and other days I feel like I should be out on the street (so to speak) talking about it for the safety of our son. Thanks for the support. :lol:

Yoli


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