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Management and treatment of students with anaphylaxis Information for Education Queensland employees. What is anaphylaxis?. the most severe and sudden form of allergic reaction occurs when there is exposure to an allergen to which a person is sensitive

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Management and treatment of students with anaphylaxisInformation for Education Queensland employees

what is anaphylaxis
What is anaphylaxis?
  • the most severe and sudden form of allergic reaction
  • occurs when there is exposure to an allergen to which a person is sensitive
  • is potentially life threatening and should be treated as a medical emergency
most common allergens for school aged children
shell fish


insect stings and bites


certain medications

Most common allergens for school-aged children
  • peanuts
  • tree nuts
  • egg
  • cow’s milk
  • sesame
  • fish
facts about peanut allergy
Facts about peanut allergy
  • increasingly common particularly in children
  • seen in approximately 1 in 50 children and 1 in 200 adults
  • allergy most likely to cause anaphylaxis and death
  • 1/2000th of a single peanut can cause an allergic reaction
symptoms and signs of anaphylaxis
Symptoms and signs of anaphylaxis
  • difficulty and/or noisy breathing
  • swelling of the tongue
  • swelling or tightness in the throat
  • difficulty talking or hoarse voice
  • wheeze or persistent cough
  • dizzy/light headed
  • loss of consciousness and/or collapse
  • pale and floppy (young child)
potentially life threatening
Potentially life threatening
  • allergic reactions can produce such severe swelling of the airways that suffocation and death may occur within minutes
  • reactions to foods can occur through:
    • ingestion
    • skin or eye contact
    • inhalation of food particles
symptoms and signs of a mild to moderate allergic reaction
Symptoms and signs of a mild to moderate allergic reaction
  • tingling of the mouth
  • hives, welts or body redness
  • swelling of the face, lips and eyes
  • vomiting, abdominal pain
managing and treating students with anaphylaxis
Managing and treating students with anaphylaxis
  • Action Plan for Anaphylaxis to be provided to school by the parent/caregiver
  • must be signed by a medical practitioner
  • plan provides details on how manage an allergic reaction and how to deal with a severe allergic reaction including appropriate emergency response
action plan for anaphylaxis
Action Plan for Anaphylaxis

where do i find a student s action plan for anaphylaxis
Where do I find a student’s Action Plan for Anaphylaxis?
  • copies of plans placed in appropriate locations across the school to alert staff
  • copy of plan also stored with student’s emergency medication (EpiPen)
training for staff
Training for staff
  • range of staff must undergo training in use of EpiPen or EpiPen Junior
  • how many staff depends on numbers of students diagnosed, variety of activities students engage in and level of associated risk
administering epipen or epipen junior
Administering EpiPen or EpiPen Junior

Instructions from Action Plan for Anaphylaxis —

epipen and epipen junior
EpiPen and EpiPen Junior
  • use of EpiPen will only ‘buy time’ while waiting for ambulance
  • fast acting but has short duration of effect
emergency treatment procedures
Emergency treatment procedures
  • For students WITH an Action Plan for Anaphylaxis
    • follow emergency response on Action Plan
    • if plan indicates use of EpiPen, trained staff if possible should administer, however ALL staff have a duty of care
    • call an ambulance – ring 000
    • if unconscious commence CPR
    • contact parents/caregivers
    • maintain airway, breathing and circulation
    • maintain close observation
emergency treatment procedures1
Emergency treatment procedures
  • For students WITHOUT an Action Plan for Anaphylaxis
    • call an ambulance
    • lay person flat and elevate legs if dizzy, confused or if have reduced level of consciousness, unless more difficult to breath
    • if unconscious commence CPR
reducing the risk in the school setting
Reducing the risk in the school setting
  • although possible to minimise students’ exposure to allergens, implementation of blanket food bans or attempts to prohibit entry not supported
  • schools must not make claims they are ‘peanut/tree nut free’ school
strategies to minimise students exposure to potential allergens
Strategies to minimise students’ exposure to potential allergens
  • school
  • classroom
  • tuckshop
  • parents
role of principal
Role of principal
  • inform school community about management and treatment of anaphylaxis
  • obtain Action Plan for Anaphylaxis from parents
  • ensure EpiPen or other medication is stored properly and securely but not locked in a cupboard or room
  • ensure staff know who carries own EpiPen and conditions of use
  • provide staff with a copy of guidelines and ensure they view PowerPoint
  • ensure staff know about individual student’s severe allergy
  • range of staff undergone training in use of EpiPen
  • students at risk of anaphylaxis given every opportunity to participate in a full range of school activities
role of parent caregiver
Role of parent/caregiver
  • inform principal in writing that their child is at risk of anaphylaxis
  • notify in writing any advice from medical practitioner
  • provide school with Action Plan for Anaphylaxis
  • provide written notification for school to administer EpiPen or assist a child to administer
  • provide the EpiPen to school
  • notify school if child is to carry own EpiPen and negotiate conditions
  • ensure EpiPen is clearly labelled and not out of date
  • replace EpiPen when it expires or is used
points to remember
Points to remember
  • Anaphylaxis is potentially life threatening
  • Action Plan for Anaphylaxis for each student reduces the risk
  • Know the students in the school and know what triggers their severe allergy
  • Know the emergency treatment procedures
  • Ask for help if unsure!
for more information
For more information
  • Education Queensland

  • Queensland Health

  • Anaphylaxis Australia Incorporated

  • Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA)