Epinephrine auto-injectors, also known as EpiPens®, will be in all Fairfax County Public Schools when school begins, as required by legislation passed earlier this year by the Virginia General Assembly. The new law requires all public schools to establish policies to acquire and administer epinephrine to any student experiencing an anaphylactic reaction.
Parents of children with a known allergy are still responsible for providing their child’s epinephrine medications and are required to ensure that their child’s own epinephrine injector and physician orders are at school in the event of an anaphylactic reaction. FCPS partners with parents and their child’s personal physician to keep a student safe by using the medication personally prescribed for that student. The new legislation does not supersede a student’s individual prescriptive order for epinephrine administration contained in his or her individual healthcare plan.
FCPS will be supplying all schools and centers with the epinephrine kits based on school enrollment. Each kit will contain two junior size auto-injectors (.15 mg each) for students weighing less than 33-66 pounds and two regular size auto-injectors (.30 mg each) for students weighing more than 66 pounds.
FCPS and the Fairfax County Health Department will train all school-based employees on the new legislation, what to do if a student might be experiencing anaphylaxis, and how to alert appropriate staff in the event a student experiences a life-threatening allergic reaction. Only designated and trained school employees on a school response team can administer epinephrine to a student experiencing anaphylaxis during typical school hours, including field trips, according to the legislation.
For more information, go to http://www.fcps.edu/dss/osp/healthservices/allergies.shtml.
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