The incidence of food allergies has become so high that it is highly likely most schools will have at least one food allergic child, compelling the school district and school personnel to get educated in food allergies. Fatal anaphylaxis is a risk, and many schools have implemented proactive management plans to prevent and treat food allergen–induced anaphylaxis. The dilemma schools face is to create plans that keep students who have food allergy safe without isolating or excluding them from school activities.
You are an investigative medical journalist tasked to research and write a journal article regarding how schools manage the prospect of students with severe food allergies. You are also the parent of a young child with allergies to peanuts who will be starting school next year, so you have vested interest in this subject.
To prepare, review the following:
In order to write this article you need to become familiar with the current literature regarding food allergy and anaphylaxis in schools, understand the risk factors for food-induced allergic reactions and anaphylaxis in the school setting. Review studies that have identified gaps in the implementation of the expert suggested procedures. What are the possible legal considerations? What is contained in an emergency kit? Using resources from Food Allergy Research and Education (FARE) and the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology websites, review the methods that are suggested to prevent relevant exposure to allergens and plans to train.
Address the following:
- Briefly mention the “Big Eight” food allergens and narrow the list down to those most common in elementary school age children.
- Describe what the school’s strategies are to reduce the risk of ingestion of the allergen as well as procedures to recognize and treat allergic reactions and anaphylaxis, and train personnel in the use of an emergency kit.
- Describe what steps parents and schools must take to minimize life threatening situations caused by the incidental or accidental ingestion of food. Address bullying and other controversies associated with this in your article.
- Include citations and reference page (APA format). Include at least two sources.
Your article should be 3-5 pages long.