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Medication administration


Has 3 years experience.

Hi Nurses,

I have again questions for you fellow school nurses. In the beginning of the school year, I sent out emails to parents regarding medication policy. One specific detail I wrote was that students will go to the nurse office/clinic and take the medication there.

I have three students in middle school and high school that needs to take medicine after lunch daily. There are times that they remember coming to my office before going to their class after lunch but most of the time, i need to call them out of their classrooms. In short, I go after the students and there are times I would miss giving the medicine due to another student sick in my office or they are somewhere else.

I would like to know how you guys do this. Do you have some kind of system that gets the child to your office? Or do you go out and find the students? Regular school schedule is fine but there's a lot of activities going on now that places the students somewhere else not in their classroom.

I appreciate any help out there.

JenTheSchoolRN, BSN, RN

Specializes in School nursing.

I often have to call kids down for meds (I am also talking MS/HS kids); kids forget, teachers forget. I have 4 kids that take meds at lunch and since the school is smaller (about 500 kids total for MS/HS), I deliver meds during lunch. I close my office for 10 minutes, head upstairs; kids know I do this each day. At least 2 of the kids that get medication would never remember to see me if I don't do this (including one nearly graduating student - been trying to wean to coming to see me, never remembers, college is gonna be fun...)

Now, there are a few days I can get too busy for this - I just call kids down then to my office.


Specializes in ED, School Nurse.

In my school of 700 HS students, I have 4 that get daily PO meds. One is a spEd student who, at the beginning of the year, forgot to come see me often. His medicine has to be taken before he eats or it doesn't work. I enlisted the help of his spEd team. They reminded him when I reminded them to remind him. After about 3 weeks of this, his spEd team had a "coming to Jesus" meeting with him and he hasn't missed since.

There is another student who forgets his meds after lunch at least a few days a week. He has gym class right after lunch, so I have to go hunt him down. I tried to enlist the help of his teacher, but he didn't even recognize this kid was in his class when I went looking for him one day. :facepalm: Next quarter, he will have a regular class after lunch so I will just call him down if he forgets.

It's a challenge to try and get these kids to take responsibility for their own health.

NutmeggeRN, BSN

Specializes in kids. Has 25 years experience.

We have phones in every room and I just call.


Specializes in family practice and school nursing. Has 30 plus years experience.

I have about 25 daily meds in a school of children with special needs,. Most of the time the staff remembers to bring the kids down but sometimes I have to call. The problem is when they leave the building for bowling, swimming, etc and forget to come down... it's really hard keeping all the different classrooms' schedules straight. Other times if the students are having "melt downs" of other difficulties I have to go to where they are to give the meds. Every day is different.


Specializes in School Nurse, Pediatrics, Surgical.

We just call. I don't go hunting for kiddo's to give meds to (I do have an assistant). But its their responsibility too so it gets charted (refusal, unable to locate, etc). If it becomes a problem we talk to them and then let parents know.


Has 3 years experience.

Thanks everyone! I just needed to know I am not doing anything different than you do and not putting my job in line. I have one parent who is very close to the school director and though no complains about the missed medication yet, i just want to be prepared in case.

Student is old enough and should be responsible enough to get to my office everyday but he doesn't. I call the room where he is almost everyday, even after asking his teachers in an email to send this student when he is in their class after school(teachers forget too). But during days that he is not in his classroom, i feel like it's my fault he is missing his medicine and worried that mom would complain.

Edited by Elixer

I had two chronic forgetters last year - I ended up doing a chart for Nov-Dec where they get a smiley face each day they remembered and a frowny face each day I had to call/track them down. If at the end of the week they had more smiles than frowns, they got a sticker. If they made it to Christmas and had less than 3 frowny weeks, they got a special prize (a little toy from dollar store). They kept the charts in their classrooms, so they would have a chance to see the chart and have it remind them before I had to call down. It worked pretty well! 2nd semester didn't have any issues. But they're also elementary age, so I don't know if MS/HS would be motivated by stickers.

(Chart attached.)

Nov_Dec Behavior Chart.docx

coughdrop.2.go, BSN, RN

Specializes in School Nursing, Public Health Nurse. Has 3 years experience.

With my HS kids they are responsible for coming. Pretty much all the scheduled meds are at lunch time so we can't call them out or have security hunt them down because they are patrolling. If they miss more than 3 (whether it's in a row, month, or semester) and the student was not absent on that day they get a call home.

I put it back in the parents hand before the parent has time to be mad at me. I will call and tell them. I will call for them if they forget. However, there are times that they are not in the class and you just can't find them. Sorry, my crystal ball is broken!!!


Has 3 years experience.

Sorry, my crystal ball is broken!!!

@SChoolNurseTXstyle, i love that! :).

I hate it when parents think we know where their kid is all the time. Especially for a G10 student, I would really want him and the parent to understand that it's his responsibility to come to my office and take his medicine. I am not your private nurse!


Has 3 years experience.

Sorry, my crystal ball is broken!!!

@SChoolNurseTXstyle, i love that! :).

I hate it when parents think we know where their kid is all the time. Especially for a G10 student, I would really want him and the parent to understand that it's his responsibility to come to my office and take his medicine. I am not your private nurse!


Specializes in School Nursing, Telemetry. Has 2 years experience.

I only work at each of my schools 2 days a week, so the secretaries and teachers have to really be accountable for being sure the kiddo gets down to receive their medication on time. We send reminders out to teachers that ding on their computer at the time of the scheduled medications, and the reminder also dings on the secretaries' computers and mine. If a med is missed or late, we fill out a "med incident" form and always have to call parent.