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Pupils With Health Needs

Some pupils have long term medical needs that can impact on school attendance or prevent access to the full curriculum.

Schools work hard to make the best provision they can for students with specific medical needs. This is not always easy.
Without the support of schools this group’s chance to reach their full potential is limited. All possible steps should be taken to maximise attendance and access to education
Children with an additional health need have a legal entitlement to fully access the whole curriculum (You can find 2017 Statutory Guidance *here*) This should mean classroom based education alongside, educational visits, social and extra curricular opportunities should be made available wherever possible to these pupils.

Most young people with a medical or health want to be treated the same as their peers and as ‘normally’ as possible as they do not want to feel different. Working in partnership with the child and their family gives school the best chance of meeting their needs.
Governing bodies must ensure that arrangements are in place in schools to support pupils with medical conditions, this may also require liaison with appropriate health and social care professionals to ensure the child/young persons specify medical or health needs are catered for.

Obviously there are numerous health /medical conditions that a school may encounter with its pupils and this section can not be a guide for managing them all specifically. However there is general guidance for supporting any health need that will be applicable.
Management of some of the more common conditions is explained in more detail below.
Whatever the condition each child is individual and plans should be tailored to their particular needs

Collaborative planning by school, family and involved health professionals will create a suitable, supportive and safe environment for pupils with medical needs. By ensuring additional health requirements -physical and/or mental are properly supported in school pupils can play a full and active role in school life, remain healthy and reach their potential.

Intimate care

  • Training of Education Staff

    We recommend that for some specific conditions appropriate training is accessed from the specialist organisations. Taking advantage of these training packages mean the school can access the training when they require it, knowing it is being provided by experts so the information will be current and credible.

    Training links are;

    Epilepsy *here*
    Diabetes *here*
    Asthma *here*
    Anaphylaxis *here*

    Writing a Health Care Plan

    An individual health care plan helps schools to identify the necessary safety measures required to support pupils with medical needs and ensure others are not put at risk.
    This plan may also help identify training needs for staff.
    A health care plan is a written agreement between school and the parents/carers which clarifies the child’s / young person’s needs in school.

    Top Tips
    • If the child/young person is under the care of specialist health professional then information should be sought from them to contribute to the care plan. They are the prescribers of the care.
    • Parents may already have documented evidence of the care required which can be referred to during the meeting.
    • A care plan template should be used to document daily care needs and emergency situations. Suggested templates are available in the general information section or are available from specialist websites.
    • Care Plans should be displayed in school where staff can see them and readily available to staff working with the child/young person ( NB ensure confidential information is not visible to the public)
    • Care Plans should be reviewed each year

    Administration of medicines

    Many prescribed medicines will not need to be taken during the school day. On occasion it is necessary to support their administration to prevent unnecessary absence from school.
    If it is agreed for the medication to be given in school the following care should be taken

    • Complete the necessary ‘Agreement to Administer’ paperwork
    • Check the medicine is in date, is labelled, in the original packaging and has instructions for the dose, administration and storage. NB Insulin may come in a preloaded pen
    • Parents are responsible for ensuring medicines left in school are in date (although it is good practice for school staff to keep a check on what is stored there)
    • Medicines for emergency use should NOT be locked away. In Primary schools these might be kept in an office but in High Schools consideration should be given to pupils carrying their own medications.
    • Agreed documentation should be completed when medication is given
    Educational Visits
    Children and Young people with additional medical heath needs should not be excluded from trips However for some children more planning may be required.
    This might include:
    • Taking time to discuss the forthcoming trip with child/young person and their family
    • Taking a copy of the health care plan. If the trip involves an overnight stay additional care needs may need to be written into the plan
    • Ensure staff going on the visit complete any necessary specific training
    • Ensure any medication is readily available throughout the trip
    • If medications need to be kept chilled use a cool bag

    School Policies 

    Schools should all have a policy for managing medical conditions and medicines in school. It needs to be clear for all staff, parents/carers and children.

    A new, educational picture book

    This covers the use of an injector pen (commonly known as an EpiPen). The book entitled ‘Me and My Injector Pen’ by Suki Bhachu is aimed at parents who have small children with food allergies.
    Like many children, Kymani is allergic to certain types of food. Join him, his best friend Nevaeh and Pip, his superhero injector pen, on a journey to the hospital.
    Together they explore the allergic reactions that are caused by the eight most common food allergies, and how Pip’s magic medicine can help. My Name Is Pip - I'm An Injectable-Pen

    Supporting pupils at school with medical conditions *here*

    Templates for care planning can be found *here*

    NHS website *here*

    Guidance on Infection control and recommended absences in school and other childcare settings *here*

    Using Emergency Inhalers in School *here*
    Asthma UK *here*
    Use of Inhalers *here*

    Anaphylaxis Campaign *here*
    Emergency care *here*
    Fact sheets *here*
    Guidance on the use of adrenaline auto-injectors in schools (2017) *here*
    Using an Epipen *here*
    Using a Jext pen *here*
    Using an Emirade pen *here*

    Diabetes in Schools *here*
    Pack for Schools *here*

    Epilepsy Action *here*
    Resources for schools *here*

Who can help?

The Healthy Child Programme (HCP) 5-19 does not write individual health care plans. However it is recognised that school staff are not health professionals. Sometimes cases may be very complex or the school do not feel the care they are being asked to provide is reasonable.
Therefore the HCP 5-19 can be contacted for advice, or to request they support a meeting between schools and parents/carers.
We can signpost you to the appropriate health professionals involved in the child/young person’s care as appropriate.
Contact Just One Number 0300 300 0123

Attendance Concerns
Some pupils have attendance concerns where medical/health reasons are cited as the cause.
In this instance a referral can be made to the HCP 5-19 team as has been agreed with Norfolk County Council.
A nurse from the team will arrange to contact the child/young person and their family as appropriate to undertake a health assessment. This will enable us to develop a baseline understanding of their needs and develop an action plan.
To further inform our assessment we can access information from other health professionals with the pupil and /or parent’s consent. Our service will provide any interventions that meet our criteria
We will strongly encourage children and families to share the outcome of this assessment with school. However it cannot be shared without consent from the pupil and/or family.
Referrals should be made to us at the Single Point of Access


For support or advice young people, families and professionals can contact:

Just One Number for Norfolk Children and Young People’s Health Services Tel: 0300 300 0123 Monday-Friday 9am-5pm Saturday 9am-1pm.

Parents can use Parentline Text messaging service: 07520 631590

Young people aged 11-19 can text Chat Health on 07480635060

Other parents who are going through or have been through this before can be a big help to you, friends or family, or you could join our online forum to speak to Norfolk Parents

CLICK HERE to find out more

Find out about the enhanced 5-19 offer ...(content required?)

And the emotional health pathway *here*


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