Could your child's asthma inhaler or epinephrine pen be banned by a school? Is it possible that, though every one of the 50 states in the union has a law allowing children with asthma to actually carry an inhaler, there are schools that are banning the medicine that may actually save a kid's life. How can this be happening?
"Every school district handles this a little bit different, and for those who don't allow children to carry their medications, I think may be due to a lack of knowledge," says professor Maureen George of the University of Pennsylvania. What are these school officials doing with these asthma inhalers?
Well it turns out that they are locking them up in an office (along with epinephrine pens). What happens if someone has an asthma attack or an allergic reaction and there is no access to their preventive medicine? Is it fair to risk a child dying because access to important drugs is not readily made available to the children that need them most?
The problem is that some school officials are concerned about children administering their own medication or sharing it with a classmate. Still, what are school officials willing to do? Keep the inhaler away from a kid, and run the risk of an asthma attack on a playground or in physical education class.
The problem here is clearly education. Many schools lump asthma inhalers in with other prescription drugs that should be administered by the school nurse or under adult supervision. Clearly, the law is on the side of the children and their parents though. Hopefully, with an ounce of education, children won't die because of something that can be prevented.