Procedures for Administering Medications

  •  PROCEDURES FOR ADMINISTERING MEDICATION TO STUDENTS

     

    General rules for all medications:

    1. Completion of a School Medication Prescriber / Parent Authorization form is required for both prescription and non-prescription medication and for each medication to be given.    No medication will be given at school unless the approved authorization form has been properly completed. 
    • Prescription medications require both a parent/guardian and physician signature.  
    • Over-the-counter medications require a parent/guardian signature.  However, a physician’s signature will be required if a parent/guardian requests a dosage that does not coincide with the manufacturer’s recommendation or when deemed necessary by the school system.
    • The School Medication Prescriber / Parent Authorization form must be updated each school year or when the expiration date is reached (no longer than one year).
    1.   The parent / guardian or parent designated adult shall deliver all medication to be administered during the school day to the school nurse, principal, or trained medication assistant. 
    • Medications should never be brought to school by the student or be on the student’s person unless they have been approved for self-administration and the proper forms have been completed.  This is to ensure the safety of all students.  
    1. Medications must be stored in a securely locked, clean container or cabinet.

    The areas of medication storage should be designated by the school nurse and principal. 

    • Exception: Students who have been approved to self administer medication by the parent/guardian, physician, school nurse and principal.
    1. A first dose of a new medication or a change in dosage of a current medication must be given at home, with the exception of emergency medications.  When there is a change in the current medication (ex: dosage, time) a new school medication prescriber / parent authorization form must be completed by the parent and physician.  A new Medication Administration Daily log should be initiated for each change.
    2. Any unusual reactions or side effects which the medication may have caused should be reported to the school nurse.
    3. It is the parent’s responsibility to notify the school when there has been a change in the student’s medication.  
    • The nurse or medication assistant must check the pharmacy label of the medication with the medication authorization on file each time a new container of medication is brought to school.  If there is a discrepancy, the nurse should be notified and the directions should be clarified before the medication is given. 
    1. The form of a medication can only be changed (ex:  cutting, crushing, or opening) with the authorization from the health care provider and delegating school nurse.  
    2. The parent / guardian (or adult requested by the parent) shall pick up a student’s medication at the end of the school year.  Medications left at school after the course of administration or at the end of the school year or those that have expired shall be destroyed by the school nurse or school nurse’s designee in the presence of a witness--documentation should be provided on the medication daily log. 
    • Medications shall be destroyed according to federal guidelines as noted in the medication curriculum developed by the State Department of Education. 
    1. The school is not allowed to stock any
    2. If a medication error is made the school nurse should be consulted immediately.  It is recommended that the Poison Control Center numbers be placed near telephones in the event of medication reactions or errors.  

    Prior to administering a dose of medication the school nurse or medication assistant shall:

    • Review the Medication Administration Daily Record to verify that the dose has not already been given. 
    • Check the seven rights of medication: Right student, Right Medication, Right Dose, Right Time, Right Route, Right Documentation and Right Reason before any medication is given. 

    Prescription Medication

    1. The parent/guardian and physician must sign the Alabama State Department of Education School Medication Prescriber / Parent Authorization form granting permission for the student to receive prescription medication at school.  No medication will be given to a student without this authorization form completed and signed.  
    2. Medication must be in the ORIGINAL CONTAINER, properly labeled (pharmacy label) with the following information:  
      1. Student’s name
      2. Physician’s name
      3. Date of prescription and discontinuation date (when applicable)
      4. Name of prescription / medication
      5. Dosage and Route
      6. Frequency and Time
    3. The parent/guardian or parent-designated responsible adult should deliver all controlled substances to the school nurse or other school employee designated by the school nurse. At no time should a student possess a controlled substance. 
    4. A first dose of a new medication or a change in dosage of a current medication must be given at home.  When there is a change in the current medication (ex: dosage, time) a new school medication prescriber / parent authorization must be completed by the parent and physician.  A new Medication Administration Daily log should be initiated with each change.  
    5. When a controlled substance is given to the school personnel responsible for medication, the school personnel should count the number of pills in the container with the parent or another school employee as a witness.  The pill count should be documented on the back of the Medication Administration Daily Record and signed by the individuals counting the medication. 

    Over-The-Counter Medication

    1. The parent/guardian and physician must sign the Alabama State Department of Education School Medication Prescriber / Parent Authorization form granting permission for the student to receive over-the-counter medication prescribed in excess of the manufacturer’s recommendation at school or when deemed necessary by the School System.

    --OR--

    1. The parent/guardian must sign the Alabama State Department of Education School Medication Prescriber / Parent Authorization form for the student to receive over-the-counter medication administered according to manufacturer’s recommendations.
    2. The over-the-counter medication MUST be in an original, unopened, sealed container identifying the medication and the manufacturer’s labeling plus the student’s name written on the container. 
    3. The parent must indicate on the school medication authorization form a reason(s) that the non-prescription medication should be given (see reason for taking on the authorization form).  Unlicensed school personnel shall only give the medication for the reason specified. 

    Self-administration of medication:

    A student with a chronic medical condition or a condition requiring emergency medications may self-administer a medication when the following criteria has been met:

    1. The School Medication Prescriber / Parent Authorization form has been completed and signed by the licensed prescriber indicating that self-administration of the specific medication is permitted.
    2. The authorization form is signed by the parent/guardian indicating that the student may self-administer the medication.
    3. The school nurse is reasonably assured that the student is able to identify and select the appropriate medication, knows the frequency and purpose of the medication as ordered, and follows the school self-administration procedures. 
    4. The registered school nurse has assessed and documented the student’s health status and abilities and determined self-administration to be safe and appropriate for this particular student.  If the nurse finds that the student is not safe and appropriate in self medicating the nurse should contact the student’s parent and physician and other arrangements should be made. 
    5.   The school administrator should be informed of any student that will be self-administering and possessing a prescribed medication. 
    6. Upon meeting the above criteria to self-administer an approved medication, a student will be able to possess and self-administer approved medications, according to the orders of the prescriber, at any time while on school property or while attending a school-sponsored event.  
    7.   Students are prohibited from possessing controlled substances on school property or during school sponsored events.

                                                                                                                (Revised 5/2020)