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School Health Nursing Program

Report to the Minnesota Legislature: Medications Dispensed in Schools Study

January 15, 2002

Appendix - Study Progress Notes

School Medication Administration Study Workgroup

Progress Notes - September, 2001

The 2001 Minnesota legislature requires the Commissioner of Health, in consultation with the Minnesota Board of Nursing, to study issues related to the administration of medications in schools, including the administration of prescription and nonprescription medications and medications needed by students to manage a chronic illness. The legislation also requires the Commissioner to make recommendations on necessary statutory changes needed to promote student health and safety in relation to administering medications in school and addressing the changing health needs of students to the legislature by January 15, 2002.

As required by the legislation, Commissioner Jan Malcolm has convened a work group consisting of representatives of the following agencies or groups to assist in the study:

  • Minnesota Department of Health (MDH)
  • Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS)
  • Minnesota Department of Children, Families and Learning (CFL)
  • Minnesota Board of Nursing (Board)
  • Minnesota Board of Teaching
  • School Nurses
  • Parents
  • School Administrators
  • Minnesota School Boards Associations
  • American Academy of Pediatrics
  • Minnesota Nurses Association

In addition, the following groups have also been invited to participate:

  • Minnesota Board of Pharmacy
  • Minnesota Academy of Family Practice
  • Minnesota Medical Association
  • Education Minnesota (Teachers)
  • Local Public Health Association of Minnesota
  • Minnesota High School League

A planning group comprised of representatives from the MDH, Board of Nursing, DHS, and CFL has scheduled three local all-day sessions for the work group. The intent of these meetings is to identify issues related to medication administration in schools, analyze data and provide information to assist the Commissioner in making recommendations.

The planning group has contacted each group/agency requesting representative(s) be identified to participate in the study group. If your agency/group has not received the information, please contact Cheryl Smoot, School Health/Child Care Consultant, at the MDH at (651) 281-9961 or cheryl.smoot@health.state.mn.us.

The first session of the work group will focus on systems for medication administration in schools, challenges to assuring healthy and safe systems for medication administration in schools, and elements that currently support a system for safe medication administration in schools. The agendas for sessions two and three will be addressed in a later Progress Note. Below is the list of the workgroup dates and locations.

  • September 20, 2001…………Minnesota Department of Children, Families and Learning, Roseville, MN
  • October 11, 2001….…………PACER Center, Bloomington, MN
  • November 15, 2001.…………Minnesota Department of Health, Energy Park Drive, St. Paul, MN

    *Sessions will be held from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. and lunch will be provided for work group members.

Contacts: MDH - Cheryl Smoot, School Health/Child Care Consultant, (651) 281-9961, cheryl.smoot@health.state.mn.us and Board of Nursing - Shirley A. Brekken, Executive Director, (612) 617-2276; shirley.brekken@state.mn.us.

School Medication Administration Study Workgroup

Progress Notes - October 2001

On September 20, 2001, the work group convened in Roseville, Minnesota. Representatives from American Academy of Pediatrics, Minnesota Chapter, Minnesota Association of School Administrators, Minnesota Association of Secondary Principals, Minnesota Board of Nursing, Minnesota Board of Pharmacy, Minnesota Board of Teaching, Minnesota Department of Children, Families and Learning, Minnesota Department of Health, Minnesota Department of Human Services, Minnesota Elementary School Principals' Association, Minnesota School Boards Association, School Nurse Organization of Minnesota, Minnesota Parents (PACER and Family Voices, American Diabetes Association, Minnesota Chapter) attended.

Each representative presented responses to the following questions:

  • To assure the health and safety of children and youth what should a system for medication administration in schools look like?
  • What do you see as the challenges to assuring this healthy and safe system for medication administration in the schools discussed in question one?
  • What are the elements that currently support a healthy and safe system for medication administration in schools?

Due to the state workers strike, the October 11, 2001, meeting was canceled. The final meeting will be held November 13, 2001, at the Minnesota Department of Health, Snelling Office Park, St. Paul, Minnesota.* The purpose of the meeting is to report a compilation of the responses presented at the first work group session and to identify assumptions and steps necessary to promote a system for safe medication administration in schools.

Meeting materials and assignments will be mailed to work group participants prior to the November 13, 2001 meeting. Questions should be directed to Cheryl Smoot, School Health/Child Care Consultant at (651) 281-9961 or cheryl.smoot@health.state.mn.us.

*This is a change in date. The meeting will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Lunch is provided for work group members only.

School Medication Administration Study Workgroup

Progress Notes - November 2001

The work group, convened by the Commissioner of Health to study issues related to the administration of medications in schools, met for the second time on November 13, 2001 in St. Paul, Minnesota. Representatives were present from the following organizations: Minnesota Association of School Administrators, Minnesota Association of Secondary Principals, Minnesota Elementary School Principals Association, Minnesota School Boards Association, School Nurse Organization of Minnesota, Minnesota Family Voices and PACER, Minnesota Chapter of the American Diabetes Association, Minnesota Children with Special Health Needs Family Consultant, Minnesota Nurses Association, Minnesota Medical Association, Minnesota Board of Pharmacy, Minnesota Department of Children, Families and Learning, Minnesota Department of Health, and Minnesota Board of Nursing. Co-chairpersons, Gayle Hallin, Assistant Commissioner, Department of Health, and Vicki Jensen, Secretary, Board of Nursing facilitated the meeting.

The work group reviewed a compiled list of responses to three questions presented by the work group members at the September 20, 2001 meeting (see Progress Notes - October 2001). Work group members affirmed the list represented their responses accurately. Representatives of the Minnesota Nurses Association and the Minnesota Medical Association, who had not attended the September 20th meeting, were presented with the opportunity to add to the responses. Both representatives noted their responses were included in the compiled list.

Based on the identification of components of a safe medication administration in schools system, the challenges to such a system, and the elements currently in place which support a safe system, the work group developed the following principles related to the development of a system for safe medication administration in schools:

  • There must be school board policies regarding administration of medications in schools.
  • A mechanism must be in place for identifying and adopting appropriate statewide standards on which policies are based.
  • Local school district medication administration procedures must be based on consistent statewide standards and guidelines.
  • Procedures should be student-centered, individualized, and culturally responsive.
  • Procedures must be developed with local health care professionals and school district personnel and families.
  • All parties involved, including district administration, must have appropriate knowledge of delegation of medication administration and supervision of personnel to whom medication administration is delegated.
  • All personnel administering medications in schools must have appropriate training.
  • Information regarding safe medication administration must be provided by the state to key constituents in a clear, consistent, and timely manner.
  • Communication among students, parents, school personnel, and health care providers is imperative concerning medication administration in schools.
  • State and local resources must be available to support safe medication administration in schools.

A draft report will be mailed to work group participants for review and comment prior to submission to the Commissioner. A report to the legislature is due by January 15, 2002.

Questions should be directed to Cheryl Smoot, School Health/Child Care Consultant at (651) 281-9961 or cheryl.smoot@state.mn.us.

 

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