Over-the-Counter Medications Procedures


    Frequently Asked Questions About Over-the-Counter Medication Administration Procedures 

    1. I want to send in a cough syrup for my child to get at lunchtime. What do I have to do?

      Send in: a doctor's note, a parent permission note, and the bottle. You could call your doctor and have them fax to the school nurse a written order which would say "Give cough syrup 2 tsp for cough Q4 hrs. PRN for cough for this school year 16-17." Send in the bottle with labels and expiration date visible. Put your student's name on the bottle or label. Lastly, write a parent permission note and mark it "for 16-17 school year".

    2. I am very busy. Is there anything I can do in the summer to handle the medication procedures?

      Yes, decide which over-the-counter drugs you are in the habit of sending to the school for your student. Include all those occasional drugs for example: allergy eye drops, or Midol or Excedrin Migraine etc. etc. Contact the student's doctor and ask that they write what is called a "PRN (PRN is a Latin term doctors and nurses use which stands for "As Needed") doctor's order" for that list and have them date it for the school year 16-17. That could be faxed to the school nurse or you could send it in yourself. Then write aparent permission note for the medicine and send in that, with the medicine, on the days when you feel the student needs it.

    3. This seems like a hassle. Can't I give the medicine to my student and have him/hertake it themselves?

      Please don't do this! That would be against School Discipline code because it creates a dangerous situation in our schools where medications are floating around unsupervised, and could easily get into the wrong hands or be taken incorrectly.

    4. I would like my student to be able to take Advil or Motrin (aka ibuprofen) for occasional muscle aches or cramps. What do I have to do?

      Send in a small bottle with the student's name written on it. Put a "Y" for yes next to the word 'Advil/Motrin' on the new yellow student emergency form you'll receive at the start of school. ONLY in the case of Tylenol, Advil, Benadryl and antacids you do not need to send in a doctor's note. All other over-the-counter and prescription medications must have a doctor's order or cannot be given.

    Tips from the Nurses:

    • Talk to your doctor about the over the counter medications you are routinely buying and giving to your children. Many products, though they are costly, have NOT been shown to be effective. They can interfere with the actions of prescribed medications, and often have side effects which do not make for a good day at school. As a group we are concerned about the trend to give young people so many of these products and wonder if this habit is what is best for our children/students.
    • Decide if your child is really well enough to be in school, if they have significant symptoms. Perhaps it would be best that they stay home and rest.
    •  Try to give a sustained release product or 12 hour product to your student before sending them to school.