Teachers' Group Votes Against Helping Children w/Diabetes - page 3

my sister sent this to me and i just wondered if anyone else had heard about this and what they thought of it. she has a 12year old son with diabetes and she has fought with the school system over... Read More

  1. by   Katnip
    The thing is, family members don't take on the responsibility as part of their profession. Teachers would have to, and that puts an enormous burden of liability on them.
  2. by   hypnotic_nurse
    Teachers should teach. Schools should have nurses to take care of medical things -- if there is no nurse, parents should insist on it, and not take out their ire on the teachers.

    Teachers' roles have already been expanded way beyond what they should be. And I just can't see loading the liability for medical choices onto them as well. You might get a few teachers who'd be willing to be trained as CDEs (if they are eligible) to help with diabetic kids in the schools -- but they'd have to be paid extra if they're asked to do an extra job.

    If teachers had wanted to be nurses, they'd have gone to nursing school.
  3. by   ktwlpn
    Quote from Mermaid4
    I am just expecting them to have cognizant first hand knowledge, just as we expect family members to have...Other than that, I understand everyones reluctance to have them be responsible enough to respond appropriately. Of course, I think that might be looked at differently were it a family member of those who disagree, who was involved, or compromised in any way because a teacher either couldn't or wouldn't be appropriately involved..Can respect that I am on the unpopular side here....See the other side as well...Still disagree...
    Look at it in this way for a second--the family can be expected to have a certain level of knowledge about their child's problems-a teacher may have SEVERAL students with a myriad of problems......
  4. by   Mermaid4
    I see everyone's point here , HOWEVER, if you are taking on the responsibility of MY sick child in your class or school, you had better be at least somewhat cognizant of signs, symptoms and avenues of intervention to take in the event an emergency arises...I just came from a school meeting at which they mentioned kids would not be allowed to take peanut butter sandwiches to school because there were people with peanut allergies on some busses...Well, if I want to send my kid to school with a peanut butter sandwich, I will do so WITH the admonishment that he or she will not take their lunch out on the bus or anywhere else other than the specified area....If they are so worried about things like peanut allergies, which can kill a person, then my diabetic child, who would also potentially be in danger, should be at least as well thought of..Using the logic of some of the posts I have seen, it would seem to me that I should not intervene if I see someone collapse with something other than a baby crowning, I should not help, for if I am a nurse, that sort of thing is not MY thing..But, I would do whatever I could to help that person...I am not trying to change anyone's mind here and certainly have no intention from varying from my own opinion, but, I am not sending my children anywhere that a teacher doesn't feel either the need or desire to be appropriately involved. Fortunately, that isn't the case in my area .....
  5. by   kidluvinRN
    Mermaid4, I think there are two points here. One is school staff responding to emergencies. The other is school staff providing routine nursing care. School staff should be trained in basic first aid and CPR. In my area I believe that a school must have 1 trained responder for 60 children in a building.
  6. by   Katnip
    Mermaid4, you specialize as an L&D nurse, but you've still had enough education and background to intervene in most emergencies. You know to immobilize a neck injury, etc. I'm an emergency nurse, but if I HAD to, I could deliver a baby.

    If you expect teachers to be able to give injections for diabetes emergencies, then they will have to be able to treat every other child with a wide variety of illnesses. Withholding peanut butter sandwiches is not the same as having to actively intervene in a medical emergency.

    I've had neighbors ask me to administer allergy shots to their kids that was drawn up at their doctor's office. I very politely refused. I know I'm professionally liable for what I give, and I'm a nurse.

    Again, it's a matter of liability. Teachers should not be forced into administering medications and taking on the liability for it.

    Maybe the school can hire a med tech or a nurse. Every school should have at least one actual nurse. Unfortunatley I know schools rarely allow for it in their budgets. But I still think it's unfair to pile more responsibility on teachers for doing something that is so far outside their basic requirements.
  7. by   smk1
    Quote from fab4fan
    IMO, an epi pen is a bit different...pretty straighforward. It's not the same as sticking a kid to check his blood sugar, then having to draw up the appropriate dose/give glucose if needed.
    as a former school health assistant i have to agree with this. The pens were very straight forward, (no drawing up anything, worrying about air bubbles, worrying about needles breaking off in a body part etc... :chuckle ) anyway there is no substitute for a school nurse, I personally witnessed our nurse refer 2 students to the pediatrician because of symptoms that suggested diabetes. Yup they had it. (one had to be hospitalized before the parents would take the kid in to the doc though) Also properly assesing bone fractures, what cut needs to be stitched, child abuse issues, finding free health and dental care for those that need it, Referring head injuries that most of us non-licensed personell would not have referred, and on and on. I feel that insulin administration is for nurses. @With a diabetic parent I personally have seen the havoc that can be brought on by improper dosing. :uhoh21:
  8. by   smk1
    Quote from Mermaid4
    I see everyone's point here , HOWEVER, if you are taking on the responsibility of MY sick child in your class or school, you had better be at least somewhat cognizant of signs, symptoms and avenues of intervention to take in the event an emergency arises...I just came from a school meeting at which they mentioned kids would not be allowed to take peanut butter sandwiches to school because there were people with peanut allergies on some busses...Well, if I want to send my kid to school with a peanut butter sandwich, I will do so WITH the admonishment that he or she will not take their lunch out on the bus or anywhere else other than the specified area....If they are so worried about things like peanut allergies, which can kill a person, then my diabetic child, who would also potentially be in danger, should be at least as well thought of..Using the logic of some of the posts I have seen, it would seem to me that I should not intervene if I see someone collapse with something other than a baby crowning, I should not help, for if I am a nurse, that sort of thing is not MY thing..But, I would do whatever I could to help that person...I am not trying to change anyone's mind here and certainly have no intention from varying from my own opinion, but, I am not sending my children anywhere that a teacher doesn't feel either the need or desire to be appropriately involved. Fortunately, that isn't the case in my area .....
    teachers have responsibility for so many children now, some classes hit close to 30 for 1 teacher. I think every person should be first aid and cpr certified for emergencies and know what to do for anaphylactic shock. Management of chronic illness is a such a complicated issue that i can completely understand someone not wanting to take on responsibility for the monitoring of chronic disease as well as remembering, recognizing, and knowing how to treat signs and symptoms. :imbar Remember that once you accept this reponsibility you may have to also take responsibility for a negative outcome (or the school district will), besides what if they aren't just taking on responsibility for your childs illness, but 2 others with diabetes, 3 more with moderate to severe asthma, 2 with ADHD, another with rage disorder and on and on. All I am saying is that in the public school system there are simply not enough hours for the teacher to get HER job done, let alone the job of a medical professional. This is why a school nurse should be required in EVERY SCHOOL!
  9. by   Mermaid4
    Good points here BUT I don't expect teachers to give injections for diabetic emergencies...I DO expect them to recognize an emergency and since I used to be a diabetic teaching nurse, I don't think it is unreasonable for them to be able to differentiate between the common signs of either hypo or hyper active reactions because either one can mimic ADD ADHD and many other sorts of attentive orders that can get the child mislabeled..Not to mention that an injection would not be the first course of action necessarily, but that a glass of juice would be , and NOT orange juice in the case of kidney involvement....Then, what about the peanut allergy person, or someone with some other sort of severe allergy who requires an injection of an epi pen and cannot give it to him or herself. As someone who has suffered an anaphylactic reaction, there really isn't a whole lot of time to ponder the point...I don't disagree with the concern here, but there has to be a level of involvement for people supposedly intelligent enough to teach and therefore accept compromised children into the school environment. I do appreciate all the points presented , however.
  10. by   KRVRN
    I think it would be reasonable for a teacher to recognize that something is happening, and knowing it is a diabetic child, to conclude that it's something diabetic related. I don't know that expecting a teacher to differentiate between what kind of reaction he's having is fair.
  11. by   smk1
    Quote from KRVRN
    I think it would be reasonable for a teacher to recognize that something is happening, and knowing it is a diabetic child, to conclude that it's something diabetic related. I don't know that expecting a teacher to differentiate between what kind of reaction he's having is fair.
    this is my point. It is one thing to know that susan has a bee-sting allergy and if she gets stung the protocol is to push the epipen and call 911/parents. It is a cut/dry issue, no room for interpretation and no confusion about "how much meds etc...". But what happens in the heat of the moment if the teacher thinks it is a hypoglycemic reaction rather than hyper? (or simply forgets which is which), As a non nurse (yet), I am just thinking of the sorts of things that I personally would be worried about in this situation. Parents are volatile people when it comes to health issues with their kids (and that's as it should be) but I don't think it is reasonable to expect someone from the general public to know what sort of reaction is happening with a complicated disease, and how to treat it. That is a nursing function. I know i wouldn't want angry parents calling because "didn't I see that little julie was having a hyperglycemic episode and needed her insulin?", or "didn't I know that bobby's blood sugar was bottoming out so he shouldn't have been running around on the playground?" on and on and on etc... Once you take responsibility for something, people expect a level of competency that just may not be there. No one WANTS to make a mistake with a child, but what happens if they do? What sort of forms are parents going to be willing to sign to release the schools from liability? In this sue-happy society, this is the key issue.
  12. by   ktwlpn
    Quote from smkoepke
    What sort of forms are parents going to be willing to sign to release the schools from liability? In this sue-happy society, this is the key issue.
    I would say absolutely NONE
    .QUOTE>..I don't disagree with the concern here, but there has to be a level of involvement for people supposedly intelligent enough to teach and therefore accept compromised children into the school environment. I do appreciate all the points presented >QUOTE> I would have to say that the schools have been FORCED into accepting compromised children-we know that there are many profoundly dis-abled children mainstreamed these days---maybe they should not be doing so? Teachers cannot be held responsible for anything other then basic CPR.....Would you expect the maitre d to give you tracheotomy if you choked and the Heimlich was not successful?
  13. by   kidluvinRN
    Quote from ktwlpn
    I would say absolutely NONE
    .QUOTE>..I don't disagree with the concern here, but there has to be a level of involvement for people supposedly intelligent enough to teach and therefore accept compromised children into the school environment. I do appreciate all the points presented >QUOTE> I would have to say that the schools have been FORCED into accepting compromised children-we know that there are many profoundly dis-abled children mainstreamed these days---maybe they should not be doing so? Teachers cannot be held responsible for anything other then basic CPR.....Would you expect the maitre d to give you tracheotomy if you choked and the Heimlich was not successful?

    This is an interesting discussion. I work in the schools as an RN for one medically fragile child. Yes, there are many profoundly disabled children in our school, and many more all the time. This is a factor of both the push towards inclusion and the ability of our medical system to keep these kids going. I believe that these children have a right to be there and that they do gain from the school experience. Yet the more there are the harder it becomes to deal with finding appropriate classrooms, teachers, aids, buses, and yes Nurses! There are open applications for substitute nurses in my district. Regular school nurses do a wonderful job; given their ratios; of putting appropriate protocols in place for chronic conditions such as Asthma, Seizure Disorder, Diabetes. These spell out for school staff what actions to take; call parent, 9-1-1, etc. The problem as I see it, and why I think the teacher assoc. made a big deal about the diabetes is that the demands and pressures are increasing on school staff related to health care issues in the classroom. As smkopke pointed out, there are huge liability issues once you go beyond basic emergency care. The school nurses I know are careful to follow delegation rules to train anyone on any care beyond this level; and this is done regularly! My concern is that as nurses we are delegating away our needed role in education, a role that is growing. I think the teachers are right to say diabetes care is a nursing responsibility. The nursing care should be there whether thru protocols or delegation to deal with a child who maybe having a diabetic reaction; but how thin can school nurses be stretched?

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