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Medical Emergencies Occurring at School

Council on School Health. Pediatrics.


Children and adults might experience medical emergency situations because of injuries, complications of chronic health conditions, or unexpected major illnesses that occur in schools. In February 2001, the American Academy of Pediatrics issued a policy statement titled "Guidelines for Emergency Medical Care in Schools" (available at:;107/2/435). Since the release of that statement, the spectrum of potential individual student emergencies has changed significantly. The increase in the number of children with special health care needs and chronic medical conditions attending schools and the challenges associated with ensuring that schools have access to on-site licensed health care professionals on an ongoing basis have added to increasing the risks of medical emergencies in schools. The goal of this statement is to increase pediatricians' awareness of schools' roles in preparing for individual student emergencies and to provide recommendations for primary care and school physicians on how to assist and support school personnel.

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