Minor injuries and illnesses can occur in children during the course of the school day. They are usually well-handled by the school nurse in consultation with a physician who serves as the school medical advisor. True medical emergencies are rare. Many school systems have part-time school medical advisors and nurses who are responsible for more than one school building and may not be readily available. Therefore, the burden of emergency recognition and management may fall on teachers, principals, or other personnel within a school.
It is important for school administrators in consulation with the school medical advisoringand nursing service to formulate a guide for emergency care. The Committee on School Health of the American Academy of Pediatrics suggests the following:
1. Every school district should identify individuals als who are authorized and trained to make urgent medical care decisions.
2. An emergency care manual and standing orders for first aid should be written and made available to nurses, athletic staff, and faculty volunteers.1
3. Procedures should be in place to summon help in catastrophic and urgent care situations from emergency sources within the community including rescue squads and, where available, the 911 system. Transportation to a hospital or medical facility should be accessible.
4. The school nurse in each building should be the key person to carry out the program as she or he is most familiar with the students' health problems. All nurses should be trained in a program of emergency came developed by physicians, emergency medical technicians, and/or other nurses with special training in emergency care1
- Received July 9, 1990.
- Accepted July 10, 1990.
- Copyright © 1990 by the American Academy of Pediatrics