Many children miss school due to asthma. The Health Office staff can help you feel comfortable to send your child to school even when they aren't at their optimum breathing function, but still able to do school work. We can do the following for your child:
1. We can assess the current respiratory status with a Peak Flow Meter which is given to you by your doctor with guidelines specific to your child. A peak flow meter is a portable, inexpensive, hand-held device used to measure how air flows from your child's lungs in one "fast blast." In other words, the meter measures your child's ability to push air out of the lungs. If your child is in the red or yellow zone, the nurse or health assistant can administer the prescribed "rescue" medication and notify you. If the child doesn't improve, you can then take him/her to the doctor. This monitoring can give you peace of mind to send your child to school. If you would like to have a Peak Flow Meter, talk to your doctor.
2. We have a oxygen saturation monitoring device that fits on the fingertip of your child and checks the percentage level of oxygen in the blood. We can easily tell if the asthma attack is severe and notify you immediately.
3. We have an SVN machine which delivers the medication more effectively than inhalers. This can help a child stay in school. If you don't have SVN medication, at least ask your doctor to get your child a spacer for the inhaler. Spacers are very important devices that help deliver the maximum dose of the medication to your child's lungs.
4. The nurse, of course, can listen to your child's lungs and tell you whether or not he/she is wheezing and the status of the lungs.
All these things can help you feel comfortable to send your child to school, knowing that if your child does develop respiratory problems, the staff can accurately assess and care for your child. You will be notified of any problems.
Come to the Health Office and complete a Asthma Care Plan for your child.
NOTE: Children can not carry their inhaler with them unless you have completed a form that is also signed by the school nurse. The parent then assumes all liability related to the loss or misuse of the medication.