Well, that was fast! Feels like summer just started, but some schools and colleges are already back in session, and the rest aren’t far behind.
Whether you’re enjoying the last few days of summer vacation, finishing up the back-to-school shopping, or already ferrying kids to class, this is a good time to think about your child’s medical needs for the school year.
Shots and physicals: Many children have already had to get a physical for sports teams or school admission requirements. But if yours hasn’t, it’s a good time to review their vaccination records and make sure they’re up-to-date. Not sure what’s needed? Bring in your child’s vaccination history to the FRESH pharmacy, and we’ll review it and make they’ve had everything that is needed. The FRESH pharmacy does not offer any shots for children under age 7, but for older students, we do offer dTap (which protects against diphtheria, tetanus and whopping cough, and requires a series of boosters) and Menactra. (Menactra is the vaccination against meningitis, and is recommended for students headed to college or boarding school.)
Adjust medication schedules: Because of the rules that most schools have about medications during class hours, the less medicines your child must take while at school, the better! So, if your child is on any kind of regular medication, such as allergy medications, review the dosing schedule. Consult your doctor or pharmacist to see if you can safely adjust the time or frequency of doses, so the child can take all medicines at home, under your direct supervision.
Review your school’s rules for medications: Most schools tightly control when, where, and how children can take medication. Review your school’s policy, even if your child isn’t on any regular medication. School medication rules apply not only to prescription medications, but to over-the-counter treatments like Tylenol or allergy relief formulas.
Your child cannot simply carry medicine to school, even if they’re old enough to understand how to properly take them. Typically, instead you must deliver all medications to the school office, in their original containers, along with a consent form that gives the staff permission to administer it to your child. (Prescription meds must be in the labeled Rx bottle.) This may seem like a hassle, but remember, school officials simply want to keep your child, and all the children, safe and healthy.