Your Child’s Health Matters
The BHA Health Services Staff believes that the ability to learn at school is directly related to the status of a student’s health.
School nurses strengthen and facilitate the educational process by improving and protecting the health status of children and staff. They identify and assist in the removal or modification of health-related barriers to learning.
School nurses are supportive partners with parents by ensuring their child’s safety through skilled professional care and monitoring of their child’s treatment and medical needs.
School nurses are supportive partners with teachers through their early nursing interventions that decrease school absenteeism and increase the instructional time inside the classroom.
BHA School Nurses are the health advocates for all the school children and staff providing preventive health, health assessment, and referral services.
We encourage you to check out information about our services and policies by clicking on the links at the left. Please contact your school nurse if you have any questions.
Injuries and illnesses at school
BHA campus has a full-time registered nurse (RN) and Medical Assistant on-site. The school clinics are equipped to provide basic first aid only. All health services staff are CPR/AED certified and have received emergency preparedness training.
If your child is seriously injured or seriously ill, we will immediately notify you or your authorized emergency contacts.
Automated External Difibrillators (AEDS)
Currently, BHA has AEDs in both Main and ECE Campuses. Several employees at each campus are certified in CPR/AED.
An AED is a small, portable device that analyzes the heart’s rhythm and prompts the user to deliver a defibrillation shock if it determines one is needed. Once turned on, the AED guides the user through each step of the defibrillation process by providing voice and/or visual prompts.
Time to defibrillation, the most critical factor in sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) survival, can be reduced if an AED is “on-site” and can be brought to the victim quickly. This is one of the reasons that survival rates improve in communities with active AED programs. The goal is to improve SCA survival rates, and on-site AEDs can make the difference.
“We care about your children and understand that students must be healthy in order to be educated, and they must be educated in order to remain healthy.”
Products used in the clinic
Certain over-the-counter products are stocked in the clinic for treatment:
- Bacitracin Antibiotic
- Hydrocortisone Cream
- Aloe Vera Lotion
- First Aid and Burn Cream
- Saline Eye Wash
Please inform the school nurse if you do not want your child to be treated with these products.
Anaphylaxis & Food Allergy
(Severe Allergic Reaction)
Anaphylaxis is a sudden, life threatening, severe allergic reaction. The most dangerous symptoms include breathing difficulties, a drop in blood pressure or shock. Common examples of potentially life threatening allergies are those to foods or stinging insects. Other allergic reactions may also occur to medications, latex or while exercising.
The emergency treatment is epinephrine, which is usually supplied in epinephrine auto-injectors (example: EpiPen® and EpiPen Jr® or Auvi-Q®).
While BHA cannot guarantee an allergy-free environment at school, the academy is committed to doing everything possible to ensure the safety of every child who has allergies.
BHA has developed guidelines to manage students with these life threatening allergies so that they may safely participate in the educational process. High School Students who are at risk for developing anaphylaxis are entitled to carry and self-administer their anaphylaxis medications (epinephrine auto-injectors) while at school or a school event, if they have met the legal requirements below:
- The medication and the self-administration must be authorized by a physician or licensed health care provider.
- The student must demonstrate to the physician, other health care provider and to the school nurse, if available, the skill level necessary to self-administer the medication. Please contact the school nurse before enrollment or at the start of the new school year, to obtain all the proper paper work needed that will help ensure the safety of your student with an allergy.
Parents of children with known anaphylaxis are expected to provide an individual supply of emergency medication to the campus nurse.
(Including, but not limited to, peanut allergy)
BHA Food Management Plan will be individualized to all students who have food allergies.
Once notified of the student’s allergy, a working partnership with students, parents, student’s physician, school nurse and other school personnel, as appropriate, begins the foundation for the development of an individual health plan (IHP).
Upon receipt of signed medical plans and parental consent, the IHP is developed. The first to be addressed is the emergency response. This ensures that a team of at least three (3) principal-designated staff members, who work daily with the affected student, are trained to recognize an allergic reaction, have the rescue drugs readily available and quickly treat the student. This will include training of these staff members annually or more frequently as the school nurse deems necessary.
The emergency response team in each school drills every semester to hone their response skills. In the case of severe life threatening allergies, the school principal will collaborate with the school nurse to send letters to other parents of the class requesting parents to voluntarily refrain from sending the allergen food in their child’s belongings during school or for after-school activities, celebrations or parties.
Depending on physical constraints within the school, if parent request, the principal may designate a food-allergy friendly area or lunch table.
Hand washing guidelines to staff and students are encouraged.
The custodial department will be instructed to use commercial wipes and cleaners that remove the allergen from the hard surfaces.
Non-food items will be adapted in curriculum for those classes who have students with food allergies.
The transportation department will also be notified, and trained to recognize the specific reactions to life threatening allergies, if applicable.
Asthma Care at School
Students with asthma should submit an annual Asthma Action Plan signed by the physician and parent. Those who require medication at school (either inhaler or nebulizer) must submit Medication Authorization Forms to the school nurse.
The 77th Texas Legislature enacted House Bill 1688, which amends the Education Code to entitle a student with asthma to possess and self-administer prescription asthma medication while on school property or at a school-related event or activity.
The bill specified the conditions under which a student is entitled to possess and self-administer asthma medication.
Asthma Action Plan
If a physician feels it is medically necessary for a student with asthma to carry and self-administer prescription asthma medication, the student must have an asthma action plan signed by the physician and parent on file. (This form can be obtained from the school nurse).
The Asthma Action Plan must be filled out each year by the student’s prescribing physician and must be signed by both the prescribing physician and the parent/guardian.
The school nurse will assess the student’s ability to recognize symptoms and correctly use the medications.
Unless an additional supply of medication is provided for storage in the school nurse’s office, parents and students must recognize that it is the student’s responsibility to carry the medication at all times. The school does not keep an emergency supply of asthma medication in stock.
Students who require asthma medication for athletic activities must also process the medication through the school nurse. If the student has permission from the physician on the Asthma Action Plan to self- carry their asthma medication, they may do so after discussion with the school nurse. If they do not have authorization to self- carry the medication, the school nurse will coordinate with the athletic coach to make sure that the students’ medication needs are met.
We want to promote a healthy environment for students and reduce the spread of communicable disease at school. When trying to decide whether to send your child to school or to keep your child at home, please review our guidelines:
Should I Keep My Child Home From School?
Our goal in giving you these guidelines is to reduce the spread of communicable diseases at school and to promote a healthy learning environment for our students and staff. InshaAllah they will help you in your decision making process as to whether to send your child to school or keep them home. If your child comes to the health office with any related ailment they will be sent home and follow up with your child’s pediatrician to determine if an office visit is needed.
If your child has a temperature at 100 degrees or over without medication, they should remain at home. When accompanied by a sore throat, nausea, or rash a contagious illness is suspected. He/she must remain at home until fever free for 24 hours without fever reducing medication.
Vomiting & Diarrhea:
A single episode of vomiting or diarrhea without accompanied fever may not be enough reason to miss school. However, children with watery diarrhea (loose runny stool or cannot get to the bathroom in time) must remain at home until diarrhea free for 24 hours without medication.
Children that are vomiting must remain at home for 24 hours once vomiting has subsided. If diarrhea or vomiting is frequent or accompanied by fever, keep the child home and consult your doctor.
Runny Nose & Coughing:
A minor cold or allergy symptoms (stuffy nose with clear drainage, sneezing, and mild cough) should not be a reason to miss school. If your child’s cough is persistent or productive and accompanied by thick or constant nasal drainage, he/she should be kept home.
Sore Throat with Fever:
Sudden onset of a sore throat accompanied by a fever may indicate a doctor visit. If the doctor diagnoses strep throat, the student must remain home for 24 hours after antibiotic treatment has begun.
Influenza Prevention & Response:
The flu, caused by the influenza virus, infects the lungs, nose, and throat. Typical flu symptoms include fever, cough and sore throat that come on suddenly. Most cases are relatively mild to moderate and do not need emergency treatment. Appropriate fluid intake, fever-reducing medication, rest and careful monitoring are recommended. People with underlying health conditions who think they have the flu should contact their health care provider.
If your child becomes ill with flu-like symptoms (fever of 100°F (38°C) or higher, plus cough and/or sore throat) , they should not come to school until the symptoms have gone, and they have been fever-free for 24 hours without the aid of fever-reducing medications such as Tylenol. Students who come to school with flu-like symptoms will be sent home. It is also important to call the school if your child misses school due to flu-like symptoms.
Pink Eye (Conjunctivitis):
If your child’s eyes are mildly red and watery and no other symptoms are present, this may indicate irritation or allergy. However, if your child’s eyes are markedly red (including under the eyelids) and accompanied by thick, yellow or green drainage, he/she may have pink eye or conjunctivitis. This condition can be caused by a virus, bacteria, or allergies – only a doctor can determine the cause. Bacterial conjunctivitis is contagious if a child rubs his/her eyes, then touches another student or an object that another student uses, and that student then rubs his/her eyes. For this reason, your child should remain home until treatment has begun or the symptoms are gone.
Rashes can be caused by many things, a few of which may be contagious. A sudden appearance of a rash over any part of the body with an unknown cause and accompanied by fever or other symptoms should be evaluated by the doctor. However, a rash caused by poison ivy/poison oak is not contagious and is not a reason to miss school. You may always take the student to the school nurse to see if he/she may remain in school or needs to be seen by the doctor.
Any circular scaly patch seen along the hairline or in the scalp must be evaluated by a physician as it may be ringworm of the scalp, which is highly contagious. Oral medications are usually the treatment of choice, but your doctor may also recommend a special shampoo or ointment. Your child may return to school after treatment has begun. Ringworm on the body is very difficult to spread to others, and these children may be present in school as long as the area is covered by a bandage or clothing. You can check with your pharmacist for over the counter treatments for ringworm on the body.
If your child has a blister or open sore on the skin that becomes covered with a yellowish crust, it may be contagious. These open sores are often seen around the nose or mouth but could be seen anywhere on the body and need to be evaluated by a doctor. Your doctor will determine when your child can return to school. Any other open areas must be covered.
If your child persistently scratches his/her head or complains of an itchy scalp, check for pin-point sized grayish white eggs (nits) within ¼ inch of the scalp that will not flick off the hair shaft. The louse bug is very small and wingless and the eggs are more easily detected. They are often found behind the ears, along the nape of the neck or on the crown of the head. If you notice these eggs or a live louse, your child must be treated with special shampoo available at drug stores and grocery stores before returning to school. Treatment must be repeated in 7-10 days. Please follow the instructions on the container carefully. Please notify the school nurse if your child is treated for head lice so that she can do appropriate case-finding.
Again, these guidelines are designed to assist in your decision-making process as to whether or not to send your child to school. Your doctor will assist you to determine if your child needs to be seen at an office visit.
Information gathered from: Communicable Disease Chart for Schools and Child-Care Centers, Texas DSHS Control of Communicable Diseases in Man—Abram Benenson, editor, American Public Health Association “Is your child too sick for school?”
Diabetes Care at School
It is important that parents of students with diabetes communicate fully with the school nurse about the student’s needs. If possible, plan to meet with the nurse prior to the beginning of the school year or before the first day of attendance for students who start later in the school year.
BHA requires the following forms be signed by the parent/guardian for all students seeking diabetes care while at school: (all forms are linked below)
- Diabetes Medical Management Plan (DMMP) signed by the student’s physician (may be from the physician or Diabetes Clinic)
- Medication Authorization Forms for use of insulin, glucagon, glucose tablets/gels, etc.
- Authorization for Administration of Diabetes Management and Care Services by Unlicensed Diabetes Care AssistantIf the student’s parent/guardian chooses not to sign the form, the parent/guardian will be responsible for administration of the diabetes care in the event the school nurse is not available.
- Insulin Pump Physician Form for students using an insulin pumpA student’s parent/guardian is required to provide all necessary supplies/food for the student with diabetes.
Role of the Unlicensed Diabetes Care Assistant (UDCA)
House Bill No. 984 (Care of the Student with Diabetes) enacted in 2005, specifies that each school train one (1) unlicensed diabetes care assistant (UDCA), if a full-time nurse is assigned to the school. In order to protect the safety and health of students, the Plano ISD has chosen to have a minimum of three (3) UDCAs trained at each campus, in addition to the nurse. Training of the UDCAs is provided under the supervision of a health care professional with expertise in the care of persons with diabetes. The UDCAs will provide diabetes management and care services, if the nurse is unavailable. Such services include, but are not limited to, the administration of insulin, or in an emergency, the administration of glucagon.
The health staff will perform the following state-required health screenings. If you do not wish the district health staff to perform the screenings, you may substitute a professional examination by a health care provider of your choice. Please contact your campus nurse for further instructions.
The results of these screenings may indicate that your child may need diagnostic evaluation beyond the school capabilities. Referrals to physicians are made as needed.
Parents are urged to obtain appropriate medical care following a school screening referral. If you do not have insurance or cannot afford care, your campus nurse may be able to assist you with referrals for free or affordable care.
Vision and Hearing Screening
This screening is mandated by Texas law in grades:
- Early Childhood (EC)
- Prekindergarten (PK)
- Kindergarten (KN)
- First (01)
- Third (03)
- Fifth (05)
- Seventh (07)
- for students in other grades who are new to BHA
Parents of students who fail two vision and or hearing screenings will receive a referral letter from the school nurse recommending a more comprehensive exam by an eye doctor and or audiologist.
Scoliosis (spinal) Screening
This screening is mandated by Texas law in grades:
- Fifth (05)
- Eighth (08)
- Students in Sixth (06) and Seventh (07) who are new to BHA
Spinal screening is designed to detect abnormalities that may be indicative of conditions such as scoliosis, kyphosis, or lordosis. This is done in a private environment by school nurses. Parents of students who have any positive findings will receive a letter from the school nurse with recommendations.
Acanthosis Nigricans Screening
Acanthosis Nigricans (AN) is a skin discoloration that may indicate high levels of insulin in the blood which results from insulin resistance. Insulin resistance can create a potential risk for the development of Type 2 Diabetes. The skin on the nape of the neck will be visually examined.
This screening is mandated by Texas law in grades:
- First (01)
- Third (03)
- Fifth (05)
- Seventh (07)
The screening is usually done at the same time as the vision and hearing screening. If the AN marker is noted, then the student will have blood pressure, height, and weight measured individually and privately at a later date. Parents will be notified of these specific findings.
Required Immunizations: mandated for attendance
Children must have documentation of receiving all age-appropriate immunizations. Visit https://www.dshs.texas.gov for state requirements. In addition to the required immunizations for school attendance for each grade level, the Texas Department of State Health Services and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have made additional vaccine recommendations for children and adolescents for added protection against dangerous and potentially life-threatening diseases.
Tdap (Adacel, Boostrix):
Increased Protection from Pertussis (Whooping Cough).
Most infants and young children are routinely vaccinated against pertussis, but because vaccine protection begins to fade in older children and adults, a new vaccine (called Tdap) has been developed against pertussis for these age groups. This vaccine combines the well-known tetanus-diphtheria (Td) booster with a pertussis booster to help protect against this potentially fatal illness.
Meningococcal (Menactra, Menomune, Menveo):
Protection from Meningococcal Meningitis.
Meningococcal meningitis, a form of meningococcal disease, is a serious bacterial infection. Unlike viral meningitis, it can potentially kill or disable an otherwise healthy young person within 1 day after the first symptoms appear. Even people who are usually healthy can get meningitis. However, data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have shown that the risk of getting meningitis increases in teens and young adults.
Students currently in grades 7-12 are required to receive vaccination against this form of bacterial meningitis in order to attend school. Also, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends a booster dose of the vaccine for 16 – 18 year olds who received the vaccine between 11 and 15 years of age, since studies have shown that protective immunity to the disease declines after a 5 year period. This decline in protection is what led to SB 1107 requiring documentation of the vaccine within the past 5 years for students entering college.
For more information visit www.voicesofmeningitis.com.
Exemptions from Immunizations
For medical reasons: The law allows physicians to write a statement stating that the vaccine(s) required would be medically harmful or injurious to the health and well-being of the child. The written statement by the physician must be submitted to the school nurse. Unless it is written in the statement that a lifelong condition exists, the exemption statement is valid for only one year from the date signed by the physician.
For reasons of conscience, including religious beliefs: The law allows parents/guardians to choose an exemption from immunization requirements for reasons of conscience, including a religious belief. The completed and returned form from the Texas DSHS must be submitted to the school nurse in order for the student to be admitted. The school will accept only the original official affidavit forms developed and issued by the Texas DSHS. The affidavit will be valid for two years.
Please note: In the case of an outbreak, an un-immunized child may be prohibited from school attendance.
Any form presented for conscientious objection to immunization must be presented before the student may start school and must be updated every two years by the anniversary date.
Because the student had the disease: Parents of students who had the chicken pox disease (varicella) may submit a signed form to the campus nurse that indicates the date that the child had the disease.
Immunity Documented by Lab Result (Immunity by Titer): Students who have had a lab test that shows they are immune to the following diseases may present a copy of the laboratory results in lieu of documentation of the vaccines:
- Varicella (chicken pox)
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
Health Services Low-Cost / Free Immunization Sources
Please bring your child’s immunization records with you to the clinic.
Always call before you go to the clinic to make sure someone will be there and/or to make an appointment.
A parent or guardian must accompany all minors.
METHODIST RICHARDSON HEALTH CENTER IMMUNIZATION CLINIC
Located within the Richardson Health Center-Richardson Senior Center
820 W. Arapaho Road Richardson, TX 75080 (972) 744-4076
Open: Tuesday 4:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. Saturday 9am – 1pm
MUST CALL MON.–FRI. 8 AM-5 PM TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT.
Students with private insurance (including CHIPS/Medicaid) are not eligible for this program.
Bring verification of residence AND complete shot record. COST: FREE (Limited to children 18 yrs & younger)
NORTH DALLAS IMMUNIZATION CLINIC
Spring Valley 8202 Spring Valley Rd, Suite 200 Dallas, TX 75240 (214) 358-0926
Open: Monday – Friday 8 am – 3pm
COST: $10 for first visit, $5 for return visits Medicaid/CHIPS accepted
Appointment Not Required. Bring complete shot record.
HEALING HANDS MINISTRIES
8515 Greenville, Suite N108 Dallas, TX 75243 (214) 221-0855
COST: $5 per child, CASH ONLY
Medicaid, CHIPS, Parkland Health+ accepted
Students with private insurance are not eligible for this program.
Bring (or fax) complete shot record or complete school record
GARLAND HEALTH DEPARTMENT
206 Carver Dr. Garland, TX 75040 (972) 205-3370
By Appointment: Monday – Friday 8 am – 4pm Walk-ins (first 40 people): Tues/Thurs 1pm – 4pm
COST: $20 per child Medicaid/CHIPS accepted.
JOHN WEST HEALTH CENTER
3312 N. Buckner, Suite 200 Dallas, TX 75228 (214) 321-5747
Open: Mon. – Fri. 8am-4pm Appointment not required.
COST: $10 for first visit, $5 for return visits. Medicaid/CHIPS accepted,
DALLAS COUNTY HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
DALLAS 2377 N. Stemmons Frwy Dallas, TX 75207 (214) 819-2163
Open: Monday – Friday 8 am – 4pm Wednesdays until 6 pm Appointment Not Required.
COST: $10 for first visit, $5 for return visits. Medicaid/CHIPS accepted.
(visit www.carevan.org for times & locations)
COST: FREE (children 18 yrs & younger) *children with private insurance (including CHIPS) are not eligible for this program
Medication at School
Medication Policy and Procedures
- Any prescription or over the counter medication must be accompanied by a completed Medication Administration Request Form and turned in to the school nurse.
- Medications are considered to be any pills, liquids, inhalers, sprays, eye drops, ear drops, cough drops or topically applied creams or ointments that are expected to relieve symptoms
- Only medications that cannot be given at home will be given at school.
- For student safety, all medication should be brought to the clinic by a parent/guardian; however, controlled substances, such as medication for ADD/ADHD and some prescription pain medications MUST be brought to the clinic and counted / signed in by the parent/guardian. Contact your campus nurse if you are not sure.
- It is recommended that the first dose of any medication be given at home where the parent can monitor the effects.
- Written permission from parents and physician is required for high students to carry and self-administer medications. Only insulin, asthma reliever inhalers or emergency epinephrine, will be allowed as self-carry medications. All other medications must be administered by the nurse.
- Intramuscular injections (IM) will only be administered in life-threatening situations per physician emergency action plans.
- Prescription medication must be in the original labeled pharmacy container and will be administered in compliance with the prescription instructions printed on the label.
- Homeopathic medications, dietary supplements and herbal supplements will be given if all of the following requirements are met:
- All the above must be supplied by the parent and accompanied by written permission.
- Medications/supplements must be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and appear in the United States Pharmacopeia.
- Medications/supplements must be in their original, properly labeled container.
- Only medications/supplements that cannot be given at home will be given at school.
- A written request will be required from a physician or other healthcare professional with authority to write prescriptions to administer approved non-prescription, homeopathic medications, herbal substances or dietary supplements when such medications are to be administered at school.
- Traditional over the counter medications will be given if all of the following requirements are met:
- The medication must be supplied by the parent and accompanied by written permission.
- Medications must be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and appear in the United States Pharmacopeia.
- Medications must be in their original, properly labeled container and labeled for dosage appropriate to the student’s age and / or weight.
- Only medications that cannot be given at home will be given at school.
- A written request will be required from a physician or other healthcare professional with authority to write prescriptions to administer approved non-prescription medications for (10) consecutive school days or more.
- Expired medications will not be given.
- Medications stored in the school clinic must be picked up by the parent/guardian before the last day of school. No unused medication will be sent home with a student and any unused medication left at the end of the school year will be destroyed.
“Brighter Horizons Academy is a model educational institution that produces generations of leaders to be successful in this life and the Hereafter.”
“Brighter Horizons Academy aims to develop practicing Muslim leaders who are lifelong learners that serve their diverse community and global society as respectful citizens.”