Minnesota Guidelines for Medication Administration in Schools - May 2005

(Updated: September 2005)

Maternal and Child Health Section graphic of an outline of a parent with a child in the middle of the outline of Minnesota.

Support from the Literature with Selected Annotations for the Minnesota Medication Administration Guidelines for Schools.

Banach, G. (January 2002). Support for Safe Medication Guidelines. Parent education information on potential poisons. School Nurse News.

Bannon, M. & Ross, E. (1998). Administration of medicines in school: Who is responsible? British Medical Journal, 316, 1591-1593.

The article focused on whether or not teachers and staff have to be responsible to administer medications. It said there were no legal requirements to do so. The article was premised on the following ideas. Chronic illness is relatively common in schoolchildren and often requires treatment during school hours. School health services are non-resident and are focused on health promotional activities rather than providing acute medical care for students. Parents and prescribers of drugs for children must communicate effectively with school staff. The use of individual healthcare plans in this context represents a constructive way forward, but these have yet to be widely implemented in practice.

Barrett, J. (2000). A School-Based Management Service for Children with Special Needs. Family & Community Health. 23, 2: 36-42.

Barter, M. & Furmidge, M. (1994). Unlicensed assistive personnel: Issues relating to delegation and supervision. Journal of Nursing Administration, 24, 36-40.

This article reviewed the standards for licensed registered nurses and the activities they could perform. Two case studies demonstrated that delegation of duties also needs to be closely supervised.

Bartlett, C. R. & and others. (1994). Developing medical and educational partnerships in school settings to meet health-related and educational needs of students who are medically fragile: How can rural schools catch that elusive rainbow? Reston from ERIC Database, Microfilm Document #369613.

This article dealt with medical-educational partnerships involving multiple disciplines collaborating to coordinate appropriate and safe care for medically fragile and technology dependent students. The need for adequately trained and certified staff members was presented. The need for guidelines for roles and responsibilities was addressed. The article also addressed the need for resources, especially in rural areas.

Bauchner, H. (1998). Specific issues related to developing, disseminating, and implementing pediatric practice guidelines for physicians, patients, families, and other stakeholders. Health Services Research. http://www.findarticles.com/ct_0/m4_v33/21244247/print.jhtml.

The article discussed the effectiveness of pediatric health care guidelines in relation to pediatric health outcomes. Published surveys of physicians found that guidelines are more effective if based on evidence rather than consensus. There was evidence that practice guidelines do improve health outcomes, but more research is needed in regard to pediatric outcomes. The need for parent involvement in adopting guidelines was necessary; their involvement could be as a change agent.

Future research was needed, especially in regard to the application of guidelines to improve children’s health care, as well as to understand the most effective approaches to developing, disseminating, and implementing information on quality.

Bennett, H. (2002). Preventing drug reactions in kids – and their parents. Contemporary Pediatrics, May.

Benning, Victoria. (June 12, 1998). Fairfax Drug Rules Amended; School Board Changes Policy on Nonprescription Medications. Washington Post. Metro Section, C06.

Berg, R. & Bailey, W. (1996). School Drug Rules Strict. The Columbus Dispatch.

Bigley, A. (1993). A study of thirty-three rural southern Illinois elementary school districts' medication policies. Master’s Thesis #LB1861.C57xE34, B5. Charleston Illinois: Eastern Illinois University.

A study of 33 selected rural elementary (K-8) schools in southern Illinois was conducted to determine how Illinois school districts regulated the administration of medication in the absence of both the superintendent and school nurse. Illinois law required that only a nurse or administrator were able to administer medications. The study found the majority of schools had a plan, but delegated to teachers or others, not administrators as the law required.

Black, S. (March 2003). Prescription for Learning. American School Board Journal. Vol. 190, No. 3.

This article addressed the shortage of nurses, the steps some states have taken to reduce the nurse to student ratio, and various states’ standards. Budget shortfalls and the resulting legislation to address this issue were presented. Each state has the option to propose solutions to the nurse shortage. Comprehensive school health programs have included medical issues.

Blanc, P.D., Kuschner, W.G., Katz, P.P., Smith, S. & Yelin, E.H. (December 1997). Use of herbal products, coffee or black tea, and over-the-counter medications as self-treatments among adults with asthma. The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. 100, 6: 789-791.

Bismarck Public School District. (2004). Medication administration handbook. Bismarck: Bismarck Public Schools.

Bradford, B., Heald, P., & Petrie, S. (1994). Health services for special needs children in Pennsylvania schools. The Journal of School Health, 64, 258-60.

A statewide survey examined the number and kind of special needs children in the regular school setting in Pennsylvania, as well as personnel, programs, policies, and resources available to support these children. More chronically ill children were entering the regular school setting, requiring that schools be more prepared to handle these students.

Bradley, C., Riaz, A., Tobias, R., Kenkre, J. & Dassu, D. (1998). Patient attitudes to over-the-counter drugs and possible professional responses to self-medication. Family Practice, 15, 1: 44-50.

Brener, N., Burstein, G., DuShaw, M., Vernon, M., Wheeler, L., & Robinson, J. (2001). Health services: Results from the School Health Policies and Programs Study 2000. The Journal of School Health, 71, 294-304.

This article reported the results of the School Health Policies and Programs Study, conducted in 2000. Data was from all 50 states and included information on a variety of school health services issues.

Briggs, Bill (1996). One school wrote own book. Denver Post.

Briggs, Bill (March 14, 1996). Quick training session could ease school-medicine crisis. Denver Post. Living Section: E-02.

Suffering a shortage of school nurses, Colorado was looking for creative and cost-effective ways to ensure safe medication administration. Many different kinds of unlicensed assistive personnel (UAPs) were being used, some delegated by school nurses and some by principals, in violation of the Colorado Nurse Practice Act. The Colorado Board of Nursing was considering further training––in the form of a one-day academic seminar provided by the state––for those UAPs who administer medications.

Briggs, Bill (1996). Schools skirt medication laws. Denver Post. A Section; Pg. A-01.

Schools in Denver cut nursing hours to save the district money or shift the monies to direct education. This forced unlicensed personnel to perform nursing tasks. Schools and the Colorado State Board of Nursing knew this was against the law, but no one was taking any steps at that time (1996) to change things. Delegation to dispense medication was often done by the principal rather than a school nurse.

Bringing medications to school. (2003). Wellspring Newsletter, 1-3.

Brink, S. (1998, November 23). Doing Ritalin right. U.S. News & World Report, 76-81.

This magazine article explained attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), medications used to treat it, and results of a long-awaited study by the National Institute of Mental Health. The study showed that drugs like Ritalin calm kids down even better than previously through––as long as the children continue taking them. But there was not proof that in the long run the drugs help kids get better grades or build better lives. This study provided stronger evidence than ever that medication can shift troubled kids to a better track. But it echoed the frustrating finding of earlier studies that a little yellow pill is not enough, by itself, to keep them there.

Brown, D.L. (1991). Teen Punished For Carrying Allergy Pills; Virginia School Prescribes Drug Abuse Program. Washington Post. Metro Section, C1.

Brown, J. (3-20-2001). Doctors’ group calls for guidelines for antibiotic prescriptions.
Associated Press.

Brown, R. & Sawyer, M. (1998). Medications for school-age children. New York: The Guilford Press.

Brody, J. (February 6, 2003). Personal health: Buyer beware the unregulated herb. New York Times. Retrieved February 6, 2003, from http://www.startribune.com/stories/1556/3632667.html.

Burcum, J. (March 4, 2003). Holistic clinics blend traditional and alternative approaches. Star Tribune. Retrieved March 5, 200, from http://www.startribune.com/

Burnsville/Eagan/Savage School district #191, Office of Health Services. (2004). School/provider communication record, medication/treatment authorization form. Burnsville, MN: Author.

Burt, C., Beetem, N., Iverson, C., Hertel, V., & Peters, D. (October 1996). Preliminary Development of the School Health Intensity Rating Scale. Journal of School Health. 66, 8: 286-290.


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