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.

FDA lays plans to reduce Rx errors. (2002, January 21). Drug Store News.

The Food and Drug Administration developed a seven-point plan to cut down on errors in dispensing prescription and over-the-counter medications. This involved guidance about format and content of labeling to minimize mix-ups between similarly named drugs (e.g., Flomax and Volmax).

Faist, A.B. (October 1992). Medication administration in Illinois schools. Chart. 89, 8: 7-8. Illinois Nurses Association.

Falkowski, C.L. (Winter 2003). The rising trend of prescription drug abuse. Hazeldon Voice. 8, 1: 10.

A few perspectives on unlicensed assistive personnel. (1999). Retrieved August 15, 2002, from http://pr.mo.gov/boards/nursing/AFewPerspectives.pdf.

Florida Department of Health. (n.d.). School health: Legislative authority. Retrieved August 15, 2002, from http://www.doh.state.fl.us/Family/school/legislative/legislative.html.

Florida Department of Juvenile Justice. (1998). Health services manual. Retrieved August 15, 2002, from http://www.djj.state.fl.us/DJJServices/Administration/manuals/health/health-services_manual_toc.html.

Foley, M. (December 13, 1999). Testimony of the ANA before the Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies Committee on Appropriations United States Senate: On patient safety and medical errors. American Nurses Association. Retrieved from http://www.nursingworld.org/gova/federal/legis/tesstimon/1999/iom.htm.

Medical errors have an extremely high cost in human lives. The numbers of related deaths are staggering. The American Nurses Association (ANA) testimony regarding patient safety and medical errors established these points: (1) the majority of medical errors did not result from individual recklessness, but from basic flaws in health system organization, (2) nursing practice responsibility had expanded, but nurses’ autonomy and decision making were increasingly constrained, (3) health care institutions were fostering a culture of individual “blame” rather than systems analysis, and (4) appropriate staffing patterns were critical to patient safety, but were ignored routinely, even by the IOM report on this subject.

Fontana, S.A., Devine, E.C., and Kelber, S.K. (January 2000). Nurse Practitioner Student Prescriptive Patterns. Journal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. 12, 1: 3-10.

Foushee, B. (April 14, 1995). Schools examine medicine policy. Tampa Tribune, Section:
Polk, 1.

This press release written in 1995 focused on the need for students to have doctor’s permission to bring over-the-counter (OTC) medicines on campus. At the time this was written, there was a school board proposal to require doctor’s orders for such action. The article also addressed who administers the medication, how it varied from health clinic aides to secretaries, and concern about the high percentage of students (70%) who used Ritalin. There were many policy topics touched on, but not explored, such as liability, illegal narcotics, and policies not followed.

Francis, E., Hemmat, J., Treloar, D., & Yarandi, H. (1996). Who dispenses pharmaceuticals to children at school? Journal of School Health, 66, 355-8.

This survey was conducted for a week in one Florida county to determine how many and what kinds of drugs were being dispensed to school-age children on a daily basis. In the public school, medication was administered to 3.5%, or 931 children. Twenty percent of children in the school for developmentally delayed received medication while 56% of children in the school for emotional/discipline problems received medication.

Most medications were given by non-health professionals assigned by school principals. Many drugs have potentially significant side effects, but the individual giving them had little or no knowledge of this. A comprehensive medication policy to provide training would offer protection and safety for both students and school.


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