Over the past year we've been recieveing messages from parents, teachers and other school staff asking how they would get a reliver inhaler in their school incase of an asthma emergency. They found the whole inhaler procurment procees very confusing.
We've created a guide that explains how a teacher can be trained in reliever inhaler administration, how a school can register to be granted permission to do so, and how to get a reliever inhaler in the school.
In 2015, legislation was introduced to allow non-medically trained people to administer life saving, prescription-only medicines in emergency situations. This legislation includes the drug salbutamol, more commonly known as a reliever inhaler, which is used to alleviate the symptoms of an asthma attack.
In order to administer a reliever inhaler in a school, you must first complete a Cardiac First Response (CFR) course. In addition to CFR skills, you will be trained in the administration of salbutamol. Most courses take one day to complete. We’ve created a step by step guide on where training is available and how you can register your school/organisation.
Step 1: Seek approval from your school/organisation
Before you begin this journey, ensure your school/organisation is willing to participate and also be certain that you or someone else are willing to become the person who is accountable for compliance with the related legislation. When these checks are complete, you or the designated person can begin the necessary training.
Step 2: Training
• You will need to find a company that provides Cardiac First Responder with Salbutamol training. Go to PHECIT.ie, which has a list of all the valid organistions and search for CFR with Salbutamol as the course you wish to undertake.
• Find the course that is most convenient for you from the list provided. We would recommend phoning the course provider for more information about the dates, location and what exactly is involved in the training.
• Appropriate courses will provide training in:
o Basic Emergency Care
o Access and use of a defibrillator
o Safety and communication
o Medication management
o Medication administration
• Register for the chosen course, and complete it. You will then receive a certificate valid for 2 years. Upon completion of the course, you should feel comfortable with; recognising when a person with asthma is having a life threatening attack, safe reliever inhaler administration, understanding the roles and responsibilities as per the emergency medication legislation, medication storage and record keeping.
Step 3: Registering with the HPRA (Health Products Regulatory Authority)
At this stage, you should be fully trained and capable of giving a reliever inhaler when someone is having an asthma attack.
• Go to HPRA.ie and register your school/organisation to procure or purchase a specified medicine (reliever inhaler) from the pharmacy.
• Your organisation will need to have appointed at least one accountable person who is legally responsible to ensure compliance with the legislation.
• The HPRA will put your school/organisation on a live register which shows that your school/organisation is fully capable to administer salbutamol (reliever inhaler).
• When you are a listed organisation, you will now be able to make notifications on the HPRA website of medications you wish to procure.
When the HPRA have authorised your medication request, you can obtain the necessary medication from a pharmacy.
Step 4: Collecting the inhaler
• The accountable person in your school/organisation must sign a written order to be provided to the pharmacist. When attending the pharmacy, the pharmacists will check that your organisation is licensed to obtain the medication and that all details are correct before releasing it to you.
• A person acting on behalf of the accountable person may provide the signed order, however, this is at the discretion of the pharmacist (if the person provides proof that they are authorised to act on behalf of the appointed person).
• The signed order must contain the following:
o Name and address of the Listed Organisation
o Name of the accountable person appointed by the Listed Organisation to ensure compliance with the regulations
o Permanent address at which the medicine will be stored, and supplied, if this differs from the address of the listed organisation
o Name of product, and the pharmaceutical form and strength of the product (except where it is apparent from the name)
o Total quantity required
This document explains how a teacher can be trained in reliever inhaler administration, how a school can register to be granted permission to do so, and how to get a reliever inhaler in the school.