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Friday, June 27, 2014

Asthma Action Plans for school - already???!!!!










I just received an email from School Nurse. It's that time of year again - already!! Time to fill out the new Asthma Action Plan for daughter Kitty for the upcoming school year. I take it to Asthma Doc to fill it out, then I sign it, then I return it to the school nurse.

Yes, the school nurses work during the summer....

There are MANY Asthma Action Plans out there, most school nurses have a form that they like to use. This one above is from the Utah Asthma Program.

Did you know that students can carry their asthma inhaler with them - AT ALL TIMES? And in every state in the country?! Allergy & Asthma Network Mothers of Asthmatics (AANMA) has an area on their website that talks about Medications at School. Their website says:

"In 2010, we celebrated that all 50 states protect students' rights to carry and self-administer asthma medications."

Do we have these laws in every state?
In 2010 we celebrated that all 50 states protect students’ rights to carry and self-administer asthma medications. But our work’s not done – one state – New York — still needs to pass a law permitting students to carry and use their anaphylaxis medications. - See more at: http://www.aanma.org/advocacy/meds-at-school/#States
Do we have these laws in every state?
In 2010 we celebrated that all 50 states protect students’ rights to carry and self-administer asthma medications. But our work’s not done – one state – New York — still needs to pass a law permitting students to carry and use their anaphylaxis medications. - See more at: http://www.aanma.org/advocacy/meds-at-school/#States
 But, you MUST fill out the proper forms each school year from your school nurse to make it legal.

Yes, all schools are "drug free zones." BUT student who have an asthma attack need immediate access to their inhaler. On AANMA's website, they also say that:

 "Every school year students have died because they were unable to get their asthma or anaphylaxis medications on time."
Every school year students have died because they were unable to get to their asthma or anaphylaxis medications on time. - See more at: http://www.aanma.org/advocacy/meds-at-school/#States

When my kids were younger, I had to give the inhaler to the teacher or school nurse to lock up. Now, they can carry it with them, as long as Asthma Doc and I fill out and sign the form at the beginning of each school year.

Page 1 on the form above tells the teacher/school nurse/recess guard what to do if Kitty has an asthma attack at school. It lists the maintenance medications she takes every day, what triggers (or causes) her asthma attacks, and what rescue medication she needs. 

Page 2 is where I sign, giving her permission to carry her inhaler and for the school personnel to help her if she needs it.

Talk to your school nurse about your student being able to carry their inhaler (and Epi Pen) with them at all times. But remember, you MUST fill out the proper forms (every school year). AANMA also has a small poster called "School Ready" that you can print out and take to your school. 



I know the panic that can set in if I have an asthma attack and my inhaler isn't close by for me to use. Our kids don't need to have that happen at school, let's protect them!


12 comments:

  1. I sent you a google hangout, don't know if you got it but I'd love to talk to you more about the ebook!

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    1. I'm not tech - what is google hangout??!!

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  2. My doctor gave me a free one month supply of Kalydeco and I'm so excited to see what it will do!! My social worker worked with me to get my insurance to cover it and needymeds will take my $3000 copay. I can't get it at walgreens since it is a very uncommon drug so I have to mail order it. Which means going to the post office every month since I don't want it delivered to my door and have it sit in the texas heat or risk it getting stolen. Still, I'm fortunate to have the G551D mutation that is treatable and that there is relatively little damage done to my pancreas compared to others with CF. It could always be worse! The vest has worked wonders for me, have you tired manual chest percussion to loosen mucus? Also I bet you have heard of this cleaning tip, but It won't hurt since maybe others will find it useful. Have you tried vaccuming or hosing down your porch at least once a week? That cuts down on how much pollen and outdoor irritants enter when you open the door. Ditch the welcome mat, as that just absorbs those things and transfers them to your shoes when you step on it. ALso try to clean your shoes often. As I mentioned , I'm a microbiologist and I swabbed the bottom of my shoe and let it grow in a pteri dish and that one grew the second most. It was mostly fungal material but still, Its one of the dirtiest things I swabbed so clean the bottom of your shoes with 94% rubbing alcohol. In the lab I work at we have spray bottles of 70% ethanol to sterizile our hands (we have to keep them pretty clean so we don't contaminate our samples). 63% alcohol is the minimun concentration to kill most germs, 70% to kill almost all. you can buy rubbing alcohol for pretty cheap. To get a good show clean, set your shoes in a tub with 2cm of the highest concentration of alcohol you can find. Most pharmacies have the max at 91% and let it soak until the alcohol evaporates. Alcohol in that concentration kills all pathogenic bacteria. There are types of bacteria that live in extreme environments such as volcanoes or high salinity environments but those are true bacteria in the sense that most people consider bacteria today. They are archea and are considered the ancestors of prokaryotic cells (bacteria). Do you have any surfaces you are curious about? Leave me a comment and I will swab it and count the colonies. I have an unlimited supply of pteri dishes and I truly enjoy doing things like this.

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    1. SO GLAD you go the medication approved!! Is Kalydeco in pill form? We have to mail order Son #2's Xolair vials for his injections. But they ship it to the doctor's office (since they have to mix it with a vial of saline solution.)

      I'm glad the compression vest is working. And I like your phrase "It could always be worse!" That's our family motto :)

      I like your idea about keeping the porch clean and cleaning your shoes. I do spray off my porch and we remove our shoes in the entry way. I can't stand to have people walking around through my house with dirty shoes.

      I have read about all the disgusting things on the bottom of shoes. Yuck!

      Have you ever swabbed the TV remote or your cell phone? I hear they can harbor a lot of gross germs too. If you have time, it would be cool to see what germs you can grow in your petri dish from the remote and the cell phone! :)

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    2. Out of the two I swabbed, the cellphone was the dirtiest. I attribute that to mostly to using it in the restroom and never washing it. The bacteria I found was strains of ecoli and bacteria commonly found on the skin. I did find streptococcus pneumonia on there so watch out. Clean off your cellphone at least twice a week with Lysol wipes or some sort of antibacterial cleaner, it really doesn't matter which as long as you clean it. As for the remote, it had less bacteria but more harmful bacteria than a cellphone. Try not to let your remote sit In your couch because it can get underneath the cushions and get all sorts or germs, always keep it on a table for example, someplace that is cleaned regularly. Vaccum under the cushions too. As with the cellphone, also clean your remote at least twice a week and clean your couch and under the cushions often too. And if you do eat on the couch, be careful because food crumbs can attract all sorts of pests

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    3. Wow! Cool stuff! Thanks for doing that! :)

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  3. When I was at school, I had to deal with asthma alone. After the collapse of communism in Poland there is no school doctors or nurses - yes, they were at school in the 1990s (the rest of "old system"), but when my lungs became crazy there weren't any doctors at schools.
    So that's why we, young people from this part of Europe, must to deal alone or with help of our parents. For me it was good, because I became more independent. Sometimes doctors make too much combinations and they aren't with me all 24 hours per day.
    Greetings from rainy south Poland! :)

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    1. Wow! I thought we had it bad here in our state. Our school nurses cover between 5 to 9 schools. Some states here have a LOT of money, so they have one school nurse for each school. How nice would that be?

      Good for you for taking care of your life and your asthma!

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  4. Good reminder to get started on the asthma paperwork. I'm still surprised I was never required to have one of these when I was in school.

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    1. I didn't have one either. The laws that allow students to carry their inhalers are relatively new, ours was passed in 2007 (from what I remember). So that requires extra paperwork.

      I didn't have an asthma action plan either, but it would have been REALLY handy to have these when my kids were little. I had no idea what I was doing back then!

      It also helps the teachers and coaches know what to do to help your child if they have an asthma attack.

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    2. Yeah, I played football and was the posterboy for asthma at my school. I remember having to give a nurse an inhaler to keep in the office and one to the athletic trainers, but then I always had my own in my pocket as well. It was a major waste of medication because the one with the trainers was only used during football and the one with the nurse was never used. They'd expired and end up being tossed.

      That was 15-20 years ago and I think the new regulations for asthma action plans are great. I'm still trying to get an official plan out of any of my doctors, but they all say I already know what to do.

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    3. Times have really changed....I don't remember every wearing a seat belt or bike helmet either!

      It's too bad your doctor won't give you an asthma action plan. They are available online for free. If you printed one out and took it in, would he fill it out?

      I know they really focus on the asthma action plan for kids, but if adults want one too, they should be able to have one!

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