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Health Services

Health Services

Clinic, Health Issues, and Medication

Epinephrine Use

Section 1002.20 (i) Florida Statute states: a student who has experienced or is at risk for life-threatening allergic reactions may carry an epinephrine auto-injector and self-administer epinephrine by auto-injector while in school, participating in school-sponsored activities, or in transit to or from school or school-sponsored activities if the school has been provided with parental/guardian and physician, advanced registered nurse practitioner or physician assistant authorization. The parent or guardian of a student authorized to carry an epinephrine autoinjector must complete permission forms annually which eliminates any and all liability with respect to the student’s use of an epinephrine auto-injector. The physician, physician assistant, or advanced registered nurse practitioner must complete permission forms annually attesting the student is able to recognize the signs and symptoms and manage their life-threatening allergies (ss.Chapters 464, 458, and 459).

Inhaler Use

Asthmatic students may carry a metered dose inhaler while in school with written permission from their parent/guardian and physician, advanced registered nurse practitioner, or physician assistant (Section 1002.20 (h) Florida Statute) (ss.Chapters 464, 458, and 459). The forms must be competed annually.

Use of Assistive Medical Equipment: Crutches, Canes, Walkers, Wheelchairs, Braces, Splints

Medical devices such as crutches, canes, walkers, wheelchairs, braces, and splints are prescribed by the medical doctor, advanced registered nurse practitioner, or physician assistant to facilitate mobility or provide support or alignment of an injured or deformed body part. Health professionals specifically fit these devices to a child, taking into consideration such parameters as height, weight, angle of alignment required, and degree of mobility assist required; and train the child/parent in their safe use and appropriate care. In order to reasonably and safely accommodate the child who has been prescribed an assistive device in the educational setting, a medical order is important in describing any activity limitations at school (i.e. no PE for one month), length of time device is to be used, any monitoring or nursing care needed during the school day (i.e. ice applications to injury, observe for pressure areas), and needed assistance in mobility on the school campus (i.e. elevator key, assistance with carrying books or extra set of books for home, extra time going from one class to the next). Parents/guardians are encouraged to communicate with the school clinic personnel regarding their child’s medical needs during the school day while using any assistive devices. A parent or guardian without a health care provider order for assistive devices or is unable to produce the documentation for assistive devices should be referred to the principal.

A student may be exempted from the regular physical education program by a written request from the attending physician, advanced registered nurse practitioner, or physician assistant stating the length of the exemption; in all cases, the principal should be notified.

Management of Life-Threatening Health Conditions

A student may be permitted to self-administer medication for potentially life-threatening illnesses such as diabetes, allergies, asthma, and cystic fibrosis. Guidelines for this process are based on F.S. 1002.20(3) (h)-(k). Written authorization is needed from the student’s physician, advanced registered nurse practitioner, or physician assistant certifying that the student has the life-threatening illness. In addition, the licensed health care provider is attesting that the student is capable of and has been instructed in the proper administration of the required medicine and/or procedure for management of life-threatening health condition(s). Also, the parent/guardian must sign a written authorization for their child to self-administer medication. This authorization also includes a statement that the school district shall incur no liability as a result of any injury arising from the self-administration. The permission is effective for the school year and will be reviewed annually. Please note that permission may be revoked if there is reason to believe that the life- sustaining medication, treatment, equipment or supplies are being used inappropriately. Parent/guardian should contact the clinic at their child’s school site for appropriate paperwork.

Communicable Disease

Students with signs and/or symptoms indicating the possible presence of a communicable or infectious disease shall be isolated from other students. The parent or guardian shall be contacted in order to take the student home. The student shall be readmitted with a written statement from a physician, advanced registered nurse practitioner, or physician assistant, and/or the student is free of signs and symptoms for at least 24 hours to 48 hours. (F.S. 381.0056, F.S.1003.22, School Board of Hillsborough County Bylaw and Policies - Policy 8450.)

Emergency Cards

An Emergency Information card must be on file in the school office annually. Any changes with emergency contact information must be made immediately by the parent or guardian in person. The principal or designee may permit a child to leave school only in the custody of one of the following adults in accordance with school district policies and procedures:

  • parent/guardian of a student, with photo ID;
  • person listed on the Emergency Contact Card, with photo ID;
  • a law enforcement officer;
  • an authorized worker from the Department of Children and Families.
Head Lice

The School Board of Hillsborough County has a “No Nit” policy. If a child is identified as having head lice or nits, he or she shall be excluded from school and shall not be permitted to return to school until he or she is free from lice and nits. Nits are the white eggs that lice lay that adhere to strands of hair. Parents are responsible to provide the appropriate treatment to eliminate head lice and nits before the child returns to school. A child should miss no more than one or two days of school because of head lice. Excessive absences due to head lice shall be addressed according to the provisions of the Compulsory School Attendance Law. (F.S. 381.0056, F.S. 1003.22, District Policy Chapter 5 - Policy 5.13)

Health Screenings

School Health Services Program conducts health screening activities at various times during a student’s school experience. Screenings are mandated in F.S. 381.0056 (5) (a). Health screenings include but are not limited to the following activities: vision, hearing, measurement of height and weight, with Body Mass Indexing calculations, scoliosis, and some school sites include dental and hypertension-high blood pressure. Parents or guardians must inform the school in writing if they do not wish their student to participate in any portion of this program annually.

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