Admin of Medication Policies
administration of medication policies
This policy was originally formulated in June 2009 and updated on 7th October 2015, 10th February 2022 at a full staff meeting.
The Board of Management (BOM) recognises that where medication is prescribed for pupils in the school, every effort should be made to ensure the safe and proper use of such drugs. Medication should be administered in a dignified and confidential manner. This is particularly important where medications are administered away from the school setting and require a level of privacy on administration.
“Medication” is described as any substance which when introduced into the body alters bodily functions.
All medications have some effect on the body, therefore it is necessary to have all medication, including “over the counter” preparations eg. painkillers, Calpol etc., prescribed by a Medical Practitioner.
Aims of this Policy:
The aims and objectives of the policy can be summarised as follows:
Minimise health risks to children and staff on the school premises
Fulfil the duty of the BOM in relation to Health and Safety requirements
Provide a framework within which medicines may be administered in cases of emergency or in instances where regularised administration has been agreed with parents/guardians.
To clarify procedures and inform all of the school community.
It is recommended that:
Any parent/guardian of a student who has a contagious infection, is ill, eg., vomiting, diarrhoea, etc., has an injury, or needs to be in receipt of medication are requested to keep the student at home for a period of recuperation.
If a child comes to school and when assessed by the nurse, is deemed to be unfit for school, then the parents/guardians will be requested by the Principal to take the child home.
Please note: Students on antibiotic treatment: it is necessary to keep him/her at home for the first three days of said treatment, as during this stage he/she may still be infectious. On returning to school after this period, antibiotics should be administered at home, prior to and after attendance at school.
As a general rule, teachers will not be involved in the administration of medication to students.
Medicines should not be on the school premises, without the written permission of the BOM/Principal plus a prescription.
In exceptional circumstances, where a designated person/School Nurse is involved in the administration of medication the procedures that are followed are the procedures for the Administration of Medication.
Administration of Medication:
1/ There is a registered nurse employed in the school and she will be responsible for safe administration of all medication.
2/ In the event of the nurse not being available, normal health/safety practice will be followed and the designated person/persons as named by the BOM will be responsible for administration of medication.
3/ Medication must not be administered unless it is in its original container with the original dispensing label.
4/ The nurse who administers medication will be responsible for recording this in the medication recording chart.
5/ Before administering medication, the nurse/designated person must adhere to the principles of the 6R’s
6/ On administration of oral medication, the nurse/designated person must ensure the medication has been swallowed.
7/ Any concern about legibility of a prescription or label must be checked with the medical practitioner who prescribed the medication or the pharmacist who dispensed the medication prior to administration.
8/ Suspected adverse reaction to any medication must be reported to the relevant medical practitioner and further administration will be withheld until after medical consultation.
9/ Any controlled drug should be administered and witnessed by 2 staff.
Transportation of Medication:
1/ All medication transported from a pupils home to school should be transported in a container with the pupils name, name of medication, dosage and time of administration clearly marked. It is the responsibility of the nurse who accepts medication from the bus escorts/SNA’s/parents/guardians to ensure this is adhered to. Any unlabeled medication should not be administered.
2/ Medication being transported from school on special outings should be placed in clearly labelled containers/envelopes with pupils name, name of medication, dosage and time of administration clearly outlined. It is the responsibility of the nurse transferring medication from its original container to note this on a recording sheet.
3/ On return from outing, the person who administered the medication must counter sign the drug recording sheet.
4/ Medication coming into school from home in luggage for use in respite must be stored in a locked cupboard in nurse’s station.
Mis-Administration of Medication:
In the event of a drug error occurring, Health and Safety procedures will be followed so that the pupil’s safety is paramount. The following procedure must be followed:-
Ring students Doctor
Prescribing of Medication:
1/ All medication administered to pupils whether at home or in school will be prescribed on a prescription sheet and signed by a medical practitioner.
2/ Only medication covered by a current prescription can be administered. Long term prescriptions to be updated annually.
3/ Medication may be administered following a fax prescription from a medical practitioner only if it is signed by the prescribing Doctor. The original prescription must be forwarded for insertion in the prescription drug cardex.
4/ Prescription letters from a medical practitioner must state clearly the pupils name, drug, dosage and time of administration.
5/ Any changes to prescriptions must be accompanied by an up to date letter or prescription from the Pupils’ medical practitioner. Details of medication changes must be documented on the pupils daily contact sheet.
Storage Of Medication:
1/ All medicines will be stored in their original containers, in a locked cupboard, specifically used for storage of medicines, in the nurse’s station.
2/ Responsibility of parents re: supply and monitoring of medications will be determined on an individual basis.
3/ Discontinued medication, medication passed its expiry date, and used needles will be safely disposed of.
4/ Missing medication will be recorded on an incident form and reported to the Principal.
Roles and Responsibilities:
The BOM has overall responsibility for the implementation and monitoring of the school policy on Administration of Medication. The Principal is the day to day manager of routines contained in the policy with the assistance of all staff members.
All parent(s)/guardian(s) should be made aware of the policy on drug administration within the school and informed that if the procedures outlined regarding receipt of prescriptions, changes of medication and transportation are not adhered to, that this may result in their son/daughter not receiving medication at school.
The effectiveness of the school policy in its present form is measured by the following criteria:
Compliance with Health and Safety legislation
Maintaining a safe and caring environment for pupils
Positive feedback from parent(s)/staff
Ensuring the primary responsibility for administering remains with parent(s)/guardian(s) with their induction guidelines. The policy will also be available in the Staff Room and in the classrooms.
This policy will be reviewed periodically. The next review date will be 2024/2025.
For Appendix see download.