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 Post subject: Epipens in lockboxes
PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2007 2:54 am 
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Joined: Sat Apr 14, 2007 12:02 pm
Posts: 15
Location: U.S.
Does anyone have any advice on how to nicely persuade school authorities to allow Epipens to be in the child's classroom and out of reach instead of locked in the health office where only the health employees have access?


Last edited by nightowlmom on Tue Jan 08, 2008 2:00 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2007 11:43 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 1643
Location: Toronto
I can tell you what happened with my friend many years ago. If you could choreograph this it would teach them quickly.

Her son was allergic to fish, and the school was concerned about what if someone got hold of his epi-pen. So, it was kept locked in the office.

One day she unexpectedly dropped by the office to check the expirey date on the epi-pen to see if it needed to be replaced. The secretary was gone out for lunch -- and had brought the key with her. :shock: That proved to them how dangerous what they were doing was. It wasn't automatic, but it didn't take much effort after that to have his epi-pen kept in his classroom.

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self: allergy to sesame seeds and peanuts
3 sons each with at least one of the following allergies: peniciilin, sulfa-based antibiotic, latex, insect bites/stings


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2007 4:48 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:39 pm
Posts: 1141
Location: saskatchewan, canada
Nightowl mom,

Have you looked into a 504 plan?

http://www.access4allergickids.com/ click on 504 on the left hand side for more info.

Locking up life saving medication, and not allowing an allergic child access to it is INSANE!!!

_________________
DD age 9 1/2 -peanuts, nuts,
DD age 7 1/2 - milk, eggs, chicken, peanuts, treenuts, cats, dogs,
DS age 2 1/2
Husband- asthma, eggs, treenuts, fish, shellfish environmental
Self - penicillan, eurithromiacin, mild laytex allergy.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2007 6:37 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2005 6:39 pm
Posts: 2946
Location: Toronto
Welcome nightowlmom.

I think you are so right - in both the U.S. and Canada it's fairly common for EpiPens to be locked in either the main office, the principal's office or the school nurse's office.

Here is a helpful site prepared by the Canadian allergists' organization and some Canadian allergy education groups. http://www.allergysafecommunities.ca/pa ... p?catid=18

If you download the "emergency plan," (prepared by allergists), it states how quickly one needs to use epinephrine in an ana. reaction. I think if your school gets that, they'll understand why it's important to keep it unlocked and available.

Best with it.

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Allergic to soy, peanut, shellfish, penicillin


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2007 2:37 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2005 8:55 pm
Posts: 412
Location: Vancouver, BC
I know that in BC, they had to change the protocol/policy/regulated rule (whatever it was) in daycares. It used to be that if you were a licensed daycare, all medications had to be in a locked box a certain height above the ground because they were scared tht children would get into the meds and poison themselves. That is the reasoning behind this rule. Once they became aware of the need for quick access to the Epipen, they made an exception for it.

I don't know if it is a rule in California, but it certainly could be challenged. I would suggest you speak to the principal, but if they don't get it, go right over their head to whoever is in charge of health issues in schools, I am sure you can make them see this differently.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2007 10:47 am 
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Location: Toronto
Pam, fyi, B.C. may have changed in daycares - but I don't think this has become standard policy there in the schools themselves.

When Allergic Living did its Schools & Allergies Survey in the Fall of 2005, we spoke to a few school boards (Richmond comes to mind) where the practice was to keep medication locked in the principal's office. (I think they think they're protecting students.)

Once again - the need for a Sabrina's Law shows itself. No consistency on these policies.

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Allergic to soy, peanut, shellfish, penicillin


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2007 1:44 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2005 8:55 pm
Posts: 412
Location: Vancouver, BC
You are right about the schools, Gwen...the daycares seem to have been much more willing to accommodate and educate themselves to deal with this...a lot of the schools that are in districts that have great policies are not even aware of the policy and certainly not the details. Hopefully, by this time next year, we will have a law that will enable schools to have a "best prectices" approach to managing this issue. :lol:


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 28, 2009 1:08 am 
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Joined: Thu Feb 26, 2009 12:05 am
Posts: 644
Location: AB, Canada
I can't believe there are school that still lock epipens in the office!! Unfortunately, DS's school is one of them!!! :evil:

I'll get around this by having one in the classroom (although the principal doesn't want this).

I would like to pursuade them to have the cabinet unlocked, I understand the need for it to be out of reach (ie high off the ground), but Locked?

Also, I hadn't really wanted DS to wear an epibelt to Kindergarten, but I suspect I'll want him to wear one sooner rather than later. Can a school try and prohibit a student from carrying an epipen themselves? They can't have them in a backpack, but a belt is different.....

:?:

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DSs 7,7,9 all PA


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Aug 28, 2009 9:30 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2008 11:00 am
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Students in K wore them when my daughter was in K eight years ago! The spares are in an unlocked cupboard in the office. My daughter needed an epi as of grade 1 and she carried it in a pouch on her waist --- there was only one incident where a student removed the pouch and taunted her :shock: so with hindsight I wish I had told her how to deal with that situation. Fortunately she was fine.

It was really cute when her friend started wearing a pouch also with a ballpoint pen in it because she wanted to be special too :D

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me: allergic to crustaceans plus environmental
teenager: allergic to hazelnuts, some other foods and environmental


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 11:59 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2006 10:53 am
Posts: 207
Location: Winnipeg, MB
True story - VERY SAD but worth reading. 10+ years ago we were told our son (now going into grade 12) would not be alllowed to wear his Epi in class in Kindergarten. We took him to a Montessori school for K that was very expensive and not anywhere hear where we lived as we needed him to be safe. Later that year, when we talked again with the school about how we were going to manage Grade 1, we found out a child had died in our school division from an allergic reaction to peanuts and they did not have ready access to her Epi (locked in her locker) and that it was now mandatory for children with allergies to carrry their Epis.

Perhaps you could check with your school to see if that statistic is one they want on their books before they change their policies! This is a true story from Winnipeg from the late 1990s. The teacher who held the dying child in his arms ended up to be my son's middle school VP. . . .his eyes still welled up with tears when we talked about it all those years later when discussing protocols for middle school safety.

I believe the Epipen worn on the child is less likely to be interfered with (i.e. opened, etc.). Mostly kids are just curious. If part of the discussion the teacher has with the children on day one is about allergies (which I recommend) and they take the Epipen out of the holder and show it to the kids and explain what it is and what it does, they won't give it another thought.

IMO at that age anything left unattended (i.e. a backpack or lunch bag) has more of an opportunity to be "investigated". I say one on the child, one in the office (unlocked) and preferably one in the first aid kit that goes out with the teachers for reccess patrol. It's a long way from out on the playground to the office in case of an emergency!

Be persistant with this one. There are times when you take a wait and see attitude, but this isn't one of them. There are many cases of people (children) who didn't get their Epi fast enough - none that I've heard of where a child was injured by playing with an Epi and having it go off accidentally!

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adult son allergic to peanuts, most tree nuts, eggs and penicillin.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 11:53 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6456
Location: Ottawa
This is an older article but the recommendations are still vaild.
http://www.cps.ca/English/statements/AL ... References
Quote:
Recommended management of anaphylactic reactions to food in children
Diagnosis
Obtain history to identify high-risk patients
Obtain history to determine high-risk foods
Confirm diagnosis through epicutaneous or radioallergosorbent testing

Prevention
Warn patients and their parents to avoid foods that trigger anaphylaxis
Have patients wear Medic Alert bracelets stating sensitivities
Advise patients to carry injectable epinephrine (Ana-Kit or EpiPen) at all times

Treatment
Inject epinephrine immediately if symptoms develop


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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:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 4:03 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 11, 2006 1:13 am
Posts: 28
Location: Medicine Hat, Alberta
Becky, I am from Alberta as well. My daughter is now in Grade 3 and has been carrying her pen on her since last year. In Kindergarten the teacher kept it in her desk. That was not always the best plan as they had lunch in a totally different area. Never though in any of her grades has her pen been locked in an office or box. I didn't realize that they did that in schools even in daycare her pen has never been locked up as i guess they all realize the seriousness of having it in an easily accesible place. I hope everything works out for you.

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Daughter Ana to Cashews, Pistachios


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 4:23 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2007 2:45 pm
Posts: 802
Location: Vancouver, BC
I'm creating a binder for the school office with a copy of the new anaphylaxis management plan, and an index tab thing for each child's individual care plan. I also bought a pouch pencil case that clips into the binder to put each child's spare epipen. My thought was that in the event of a fire or other school evacuation, the secretary could just grab the binder and all the epipens would be there in addition to the medical information on each child.

I'm contemplating whether my DD should wear two units in addition to this spare one in the office, or have her wear one and have the 2nd one kept in the classroom.

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DD 2004 Allergy to peanuts, egg, sesame, and new: lentils and chick peas
DS 2006 Allergy to peanuts, tree nuts, milk, egg, kiwi fruit, eczema


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 01, 2009 2:17 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6456
Location: Ottawa
Alison's Mom wrote:
I'm creating a binder for the school office with a copy of the new anaphylaxis management plan, and an index tab thing for each child's individual care plan. I also bought a pouch pencil case that clips into the binder to put each child's spare epipen. My thought was that in the event of a fire or other school evacuation, the secretary could just grab the binder and all the epipens would be there in addition to the medical information on each child.


I asked our school administrator about their emergency kit and this is exactly what she has! :)

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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: Re: Epipens in lockboxes
PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2010 2:01 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 05, 2010 11:37 am
Posts: 1523
Location: Alberta
In the school my DD went to in grade 8 they went to a different school (same town) for options. This meant another epi-pen for that school and training for teacher etc. Since we know how things can happen, I made a few trips to the option school preparing.
I took another epi pen, a picture to post, and asked when the training would take place. They did not have yearly training so the two teachers she would be involved with came to her home school where I gave a talk to everyone there. Making a long story short, in January when I went to exchange expired epi pens I asked to see where the "wall of fame" as they called it was. It was nowhere to be found and all the meds including epi pens were locked up. This in a school with 400 kids in it and at least 4 epi pens that I saw in the locked cabinet.

The following September the principal gave a talk and I attended. One of the points he made was that he knew how important it was to be educated in this area as in 1994 he had driven a student to the hospital while suffering an anaphylactic reaction. I couldn't believe it - he had apparently witnessed this yet still felt it was ok to have untrained staff, locked emergency medication and didn't think posting pictures of kids with life-threatening special needs was important to do in September.


Michele

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Myself - Seasonal, cats
dd-asthma (trigger - flu) anaphylactic to eggs, severe allergies to bugspray and penicilin,pulmicort
ds-Seasonal, cats and OAS
dh-allergy cats, bugspray and guava, outgrew egg allergy


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