Medication at School
Each school principal will authorize at least two staff members who will be trained to administer prescribed or non-prescribed medication. These designated staff members will receive RN delegation prior to the opening of school each year.
Medication may be dispensed to students on a scheduled basis upon written authorization from a parent with a written request by a licensed health professional prescribing within the scope of their prescriptive authority. If the medication is to be administered for more than fifteen (15) consecutive days, the written request must be accompanied by written instructions from a licensed health professional. Requests will be valid for not more than the current school year. The prescribed or non-prescribed medication must be properly labeled and in the original container. The dispenser of prescribed or non-prescribed oral medication will:
- Collect the medication directly from the parent (students should not transport medication to school), collect an authorization form properly signed by the parent and by the prescribing health professional and collect instructions from the prescribing health professional if the medication is to be administered more than fifteen (15) consecutive days;
- Store the prescription or non-prescribed medication (not more than a twenty (20) day supply) in a locked, substantially constructed cabinet;
- Maintain a daily record which indicates that the prescribed or non-prescribed medication was dispensed; and
- Provide for supervision by a physician or registered nurse.
A copy of this policy will be provided to the parent upon request for administration of medication in the schools.
Prescribed and over-the-counter oral or topical medications, eye drops or ear drops may be administered by a registered nurse, a licensed practical nurse or an authorized staff member.
Nasal sprays containing legend (prescription) drugs or controlled substances may only be administered by a school nurse or, if a school nurse is not present on school premises, an authorized school employee; or a parent-designated adult with training as required by RCW 28A.210.260.
No prescribed medication will be administered by injection by staff except when a student is susceptible to a predetermined, life-endangering situation. The parent will submit a written statement which grants a staff member the authority to act according to the specific written orders and supporting directions provided by licensed health professional prescribing within his or her prescriptive authority (e.g., medication administered to counteract a reaction to an insect sting). Such medication will be administered by staff trained by the supervising registered nurse to administer such an injection.
Written orders for emergency medication, signed and dated, from the licensed health professional prescribing within his or her prescriptive authority will:
- State that the student suffers from an allergy which may result in an anaphylactic reaction;
- Identify the drug, the mode of administration, the dose. Epinephrine administered by inhalation, rather than injection, may be a treatment option. This decision must be made by the licensed health professional prescribing within his or her prescriptive authority;
- Indicate when the injection will be administered based on anticipated symptoms or time lapse from exposure to the allergen;
- Recommend follow-up after administration, which may include care of the stinger, need for a tourniquet, administration of additional medications, transport to hospital; and
- Specify how to report to the health professional prescribing within his or her prescriptive authority and any record keeping recommendations.
If a health professional and a student’s parent request that a student be permitted to carry his/or her own medication and/or be permitted to self-administer the medication, the principal may grant permission after consulting with the school nurse. The process for requesting and providing instructions will be the same as established for oral medications. The principal and nurse will take into account the age, maturity and capability of the student; the nature of the medication; the circumstances under which the student will or may have to self-administer the medication and other issues relevant in the specific case before authorizing a student to carry and/or self-administer medication at school. Except in the case of multi-dose devices (like asthma inhalers), students will only carry one day’s supply of medication at a time. Violations of any conditions placed on the student permitted to carry and/or self-administer his or her own medication may result in termination of that permission, as well as the imposition of discipline when appropriate.
Revised: 08.02.13; 06.15.15