3420 Anaphylaxis Prevention and Response

  • Anaphylaxis is a life-threatening allergic reaction that may involve systems of the entire body.  Anaphylaxis is a medical emergency that requires immediate medical treatment and follow-up care by an allergist/immunologist.

    The Yelm Community Schools Board of Directors expects school administrators, teachers, and support staff to be informed and aware of life threatening allergic reactions (anaphylaxis) and how to deal with the resulting medical emergencies. For students, some common life threatening allergens are peanuts, tree nuts, fish, bee or other insect stings, latex, and some medications. Affected students require planned care and support during the school day and during school sponsored activities.  Additionally, any student could potentially have a life threatening allergic reaction even without a history of such.

    Parents/guardians are responsible for informing the school about their student’s potential risk for anaphylaxis and for ensuring the provision of ongoing health information and necessary medical supplies. The district will take reasonable measures to avoid allergens for affected students. The district will also train all staff in the awareness of anaphylaxis and prepare them to respond to emergencies. Additionally, student specific training will be provided for appropriate personnel.

    Even with the district’s best efforts, staff and parents/guardians need to be aware that it is not possible to achieve a completely allergen-free environment. However, the district will take precautions to reduce the risk of a student with a history of anaphylaxis coming into contact with the offending allergen in school.

    The superintendent will establish procedures to support this policy and to ensure:

    1. Rescue protocol in cases of suspected anaphylaxis will follow OSPI’s Guidelines for the Care of Students with Anaphylaxis (2009);

    2. A simple and standardized format for emergency care plans is utilized;

    3. A protocol is in place to ensure emergency care plans are current and completed;

    4. Medication orders are clear and unambiguous;

    5. Training and documentation is a priority.

    Cross Reference:  
    Board Policy 3419         Self-Administration of Asthma and Anaphylaxis Medications
    Board Policy 3416         Medication at School

    Legal References:  
    RCW 28A.210.3803         Anaphylaxis – Policy Guidelines – Procedures – Report

    Management Resources: 
    OSPI, March 2009                 Guidelines for the Care of Students with Anaphylaxis
    Policy and Legal News        February 2009; August 2012; December 2013; August 2018

    ADOPTED: 04/23/2009
    REVISED: 10/25/12; 5/23/19

    Procedure No. 3420P Anaphylaxis Prevention and Response

    For students with a medically diagnosed life-threatening allergy (anaphylaxis), the district will take appropriate steps for the student’s safety, including implementing a nursing care plan. The district will utilize the Guidelines for the Care of Students with Anaphylaxis published by the Office of the Superintendent for Public Instruction.

    Parent/Guardian Responsibility

    Prior to enrolling a student, the parent/guardian will inform the school in writing of the medically diagnosed allergy(ies) and risk of anaphylaxis. Upon receiving the diagnosis, school staff will contact the parent/guardian to develop a nursing care plan. A nursing care plan will be developed for each student with a medically diagnosed life-threatening allergy.

    Nursing Care Plan

    The school nurse (registered nurse) will develop a written plan that identifies the student’s allergies, symptoms of exposure, practical strategies to minimize the risks and how to respond in an emergency.

    The principal or designee (school nurse) may arrange for a consultation with the parent/guardian prior to the first day of attendance to develop and discuss the nursing care plan. The plan will be developed by the school nurse in collaboration with parent/guardian, licensed heath care provider (LHP), and appropriate school staff. If the treatment plan includes self-administration of medications, the parents/guardian, students and staff will comply with policy and procedure 3419, Self-Administration of Asthma and Anaphylaxis Medication.

    Annually and prior to the first day of attendance, the student health file will contain: 1) a current completed nursing care plan; 2) a written description of the treatment order, signed by a LHP; and 3) an adequate and current supply of auto-injectors (and other medications if needed). The school will also recommend to the parents/guardians that the student wear a medical alert bracelet at all times. The parents/guardians are responsible for notifying the school if the student’s condition changes and for providing the medical treatment order, appropriate auto-injectors, and other medications as ordered by the LHP.

    The district will exclude from school those students who have a medically diagnosed life-threatening allergy and no medication or treatment order presented to the school, to the extent that the district can do so consistent with federal requirements for students with disabilities under the Individuals with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and pursuant to the following due process requirements:

    1. Written notice to the parents/guardians or persons in loco parentis is delivered in person or by certified mail.

    2. Notice of the applicable laws, including a copy of the laws and rules.

    3. The order that the student shall be excluded from school immediately and until medications or a treatment order is presented.

    Communications Plan and Responsibility of School Staff

    After the nursing care plan is developed, the school principal or a designee will inform appropriate staff regarding the affected student. The school nurse (R.N.) will train appropriate staff regarding the affected student and the nursing care plan. The plan will be distributed to appropriate staff and placed in appropriate locations in the district (class room, office, school bus, lunchroom, near playground etc.). With the permission of parents/guardian and the student, (if appropriate), other students and parents may be given information about the student’s condition.

    All School Staff Training

    Annually, each school principal will provide an in-service training on how to minimize exposure and how to respond to an anaphylaxis emergency. The training will include a review of avoidance strategies, recognition of symptoms, the emergency protocols to deal with an anaphylaxis episode (calling 911/EMS when symptoms of anaphylaxis are first observed), and hands-on training in the use of an auto injector.  Training should also include notifications that more than one dose may be necessary in a prolonged anaphylaxis event.

    Student specific training and additional information will be provided (by the school nurse) to teachers, teacher’s assistants, clerical staff, food service workers, and bus drivers who will have known contact with a student diagnosed with a known allergen.

    Student-specific Training

    Annually, before the start of the school year and/or before the student attends school for the first time, the school nurse will provide student-specific training and additional information to teachers, teacher’s assistants, clerical staff, food service workers, and bus drivers who will have known contact with a student diagnosed with a known allergen and are implementing the nursing care plan.

    Controlling the Exposure to Allergens

    Controlling the exposure to allergens requires the cooperation of parents, students, the health care community, school employees, and the board. The district will inform parents of the presence of a student with life threatening allergies in their child’s classroom and/or school and the measures being taken to protect the affected student. Parents will be asked to cooperate and avoid including the allergen in school lunches and snacks or other products. The district will discourage the sharing of food, utensils, and containers. The district will take other precautions such as avoiding the use of party balloons or contact with latex gloves. Additionally, play areas will be specified that are lowest risk for the affected student.

    The district will also identify high-risk events and areas for students with life-threatening allergies, such as foods and beverages brought to school for seasonal events, school equipment, and curricular materials used by large numbers of students (play-dough, stuffed toys, science projects, etc.), and implement appropriate accommodations.

    During school-sponsored activities, appropriate supervisors, staff and parents will be made aware of the identity of the student with life-threatening allergies, the allergens, symptoms and treatment. The lead teacher will ensure that the auto-injector is brought on field trips.

    ADOPTED: 04/23/2009
    REVISED:  10/25/12; 5/23/19

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