The purpose of this Administration of Medication Policy 7.2.01-C19 is to provide clear direction for C&F Employees to follow in administering drugs or medication to children at the Child Care Centre and for appropriate record-keeping.
This 7.2.01-C19 Policy supports children’s health, safety and well-being when administering medication by setting out measures to:
- Ensure children receive only those medications deemed necessary and appropriate by their Primary Contact.
- Reduce the potential for errors.
- Ensure medications do not spoil due to improper storage.
- Prevent accidental ingestion.
- Administer emergency allergy and asthma drugs and medications quickly when needed.
- Safely administer medications according to established routines and the COVID-19 specific health and safety requirements.
Definitions of Drugs and Medications
Where the term drugs and/or medications is used in this 7.2.01-C19 Policy, the term refers to any product with a drug identification number (DIN), with the exception of sunscreen, lotion, lip balm, bug spray, hand sanitizer and diaper cream that is not used for acute, symptomatic treatment.
For the purpose of this Policy, drugs and medications fall into the following two categories, unless otherwise specified:
- Prescription, intended for acute, symptomatic treatment; and
- Over-the-counter, intended for acute, symptomatic treatment.
Any topical products or drugs/medication in the first aid kit will not be used on children to clean or treat wounds. Children’s cuts and wounds will be disinfected in accordance with local public health recommendations.
Authorization by Primary Contact
Whenever possible, Primary Contacts are encouraged to administer drugs or medications to their children at home if this can be done without affecting the child’s treatment schedule.
Prescription and over-the-counter medications will be administered only with written authorization by their Primary Contact, using Permission to Administer Medication Form 7.4.07, always accompanied by a doctor’s note for over-the-counter medication. In addition to the Primary Contact’s signature when the form is first filled out, Primary Contacts need to initial for daily permission.
Where a drug or medication is to be administered to a child on an “as needed” basis (i.e. there is no specific schedule or time of the day for administration), the drug or medication must be accompanied with a doctor’s note containing the same information as a pharmacy label and outline signs and symptoms for administering the drug or medication and the appropriate dosage. The reason for any administration will be documented in the appropriate staff communication book (e.g. daily written record) and in the Symptom of Illness Form 7.2.42. The Primary Contact will be notified.
The Permission to Administer Medication Form 7.4.07 will be reviewed with Primary Contacts whenever there is a refill of a medication or a new medication is prescribed to ensure the dosage continues to be accurate (e.g. based on the child’s age or weight).
Any drugs or medications remaining after the treatment period will be returned to the Primary Contact, where possible, and this will be documented on the Permission to Administer Medication Form 7.4.07.
Where attempts have been made to return a drug or medication and the Primary Contact has not taken the medication home, the Supervisor will ensure that the efforts made to return the drug or medication have been documented in the appropriate staff communication book (e.g. daily written record), and the drug or medication will be returned to a pharmacist for proper disposal.
Drug and Medication Requirements
All drug or medication containers must be clearly labelled with:
- The child’s full name
- The name of the drug or medication
- The dosage of the drug or medication
- Instructions for storage
- Instructions for administration
- The date of purchase of the medication for prescription medications, and
- The expiry date of the medication, if applicable.
Drugs or medications that are expired (including epinephrine) will not be administered at any time.
All drugs and medications will be:
- Stored in accordance with the instructions for storage on the label
- Inaccessible at all times to children in a designated, locked storage space (e.g. in a refrigerator, cabinet, cupboard or drawer).
For storage of emergency medications, please see below.
Storage of Emergency Medications
Emergency medications will never be locked up and will be made easily accessible to all staff while being kept out of the reach of children, including during outdoor play periods and off-premises activities.
In case of an emergency, all staff will be made aware of the location of children’s emergency medications at all times.
Children Administering Own Drugs and Medications
To ensure prompt administration, children of school age (6 to 12 years) who are developmentally responsible to administer their own medication will be permitted to carry their own asthma or emergency allergy medication as per discussion with the Supervisor and the Primary Contact. The Primary Contact will be required to submit to the Supervisor, a detailed written procedure for the administration of the medication.
Where a child has written permission to carry their emergency allergy or asthma medication, precautions will be taken to ensure that these medications are not accessible to other children (e.g., in cubbies or backpacks that are unattended).
Responsibility for Administration of Medication
The administration of medication to a child in LEF’s care is the responsibility of the Supervisor.
Where the Supervisor is absent, they will delegate this responsibility to another individual. The name of the individual who has been delegated and the duration of the delegation will be documented in the appropriate staff communication book (e.g. daily written record).
The Supervisor must take all appropriate precautions when administering medication to a child, including wearing PPE in accordance with the Health and Safety, PPE Policy 7.2.30.
The Supervisor will follow these steps when administering medication to children in the Child Care Centre.
Safety Check Steps
- Medication is in the original, child resistant container.
- Medication bottle clearly displays the child’s name.
- The date that the medication was prescribed is on the label. In the event that the medication is expired, the medication must not be administered. It will be returned to the Primary Contact.
- The doctor’s name appears on the prescription label.
Steps for Giving Medication
- Wash hands by following the Hand Hygiene Policy 7.2.56
- Ensure appropriate PPE is being worn at all times. Please refer to the Health and Safety, PPE Policy 7.30.
- Remove the medication from the designated storage space.
- Compare Permission to Administer Medication Form 7.07 with the medication label and check for:
4.1 Where information is missing on a medication label and/or the written authorization by the Primary Contact does not match the label on the labeled container, the Child Care Centre will not accept or administer the medication until the label and/or written authorization by the Primary Contact accurately contains all the required information.
- Name of medication
- Amount of medication
- Time of administration
- Route of administration
- Type of dispenser.
4.2 Where medications are past their expiry date, they will be returned to the Primary Contact of the child. This will be documented on the Permission to Administer Medication From 7.4.07
- Bring the child and the medicine to an area away from other children and away from diapering or toileting areas.
- Wash hands again by following handwashing hygiene as set out in Hand Hygiene Policy 7.2.5
- Check the “5 Rights”
- Right child
- Right medicine
- Right time
- Right amount
- Right route (i.e. mouth, ear, eye, nose, etc.)
- Give the medication to the child, using the right route, see section just below on Right Route – Notes on Giving Medication, while avoiding getting close to the face of the child when possible and safe to do so.
- After administering the medication, remove PPE following proper procedures as per Health and Safety, PPE Policy 7.2.30 and wash hands as per Hand Hygiene 7.2.56.
- Return medication to the designated storage space and store medication in accordance with the instructions for storage on the label, and lock the storage space.
- Complete staff section of Permission to Administer Medication Form 7.4.07, including whether the schedule was met, a dose was missed or late and the reasons why and the Primary Contact will be notified.
- Observe the child for side effects of medication and document the observation on the child’s Permission to Administer Medication Form 7.4.07.
12.1 Where adverse symptoms appear upon administration of medication, the Supervisor must immediately:
i. Administer first aid to the child, where appropriate;
ii. Contact emergency services (911), where appropriate;
iii. Send the medication and administration information with the child if they are leaving the premises to seek medical attention;
iv. Notify the Primary Contact of the child;
v. Notify the Supervisor or designate;
vi. Document the incident in the appropriate staff communication book (e.g. daily written record); and
vii. Document any symptoms of ill health in the child’s records, where applicable.
Notes on Giving Medication
- Shake, if necessary.
- Use clean medication spoons, syringes, droppers, or medicine cups that have measurements on them provided by the Primary Contact. (Do not use household teaspoon to measure).
- Give the liquid slowly and wait for the child to swallow.
- Measure into a paper cup.
- Dispense as directed by the health care provider or Primary Contact.
- Break large pills into smaller pieces if there is a score line on the pill. Only smash pills if directions allow it. Some pills are to be chewed instead of swallowed whole.
- Pull ear toward the back of the head.
- Administer medication using appropriate dispenser.
- Gently pull out lower eyelid, and
- Apply drops in the ‘cup’ of the lower lid.
- Lay the child on his or her back.
- Ask the child to ‘sniff’ after nose drops have been administered.
- The child can stand or sit up when applying medication.
- Ask the child to ‘sniff’ after nose spray has been administered.
Information about a child’s medical needs will be treated confidentially and every effort will be made to protect the privacy of the child, except when information must be disclosed for the purpose of implementing the procedures in this Policy and for legal reasons (e.g. to the Ministry of Education, College of Early Childhood Educators, law enforcement authorities or a Children’s Aid Society).
Staff’s Own Drugs and Medications
Drugs or medications purchased by staff for their own use will be kept inaccessible (e.g. stored in locker versus left in a purse in the classroom) to children and will not be administered to children at any time, except where written authorization by a Primary Contact to administer has been obtained (e.g. hand sanitizer).
Review and Signature
Administration of Medication Policy 7.2.01-1-C19 must be reviewed and signed at least annually by all C&F Employees.
7.2.01-1-C19: Administration of Medication
Effective Date: July 2, 2020
Prepared and Approved by Executive Director