Administration of Medicines Policy
We promote the good health of children attending nursery and take necessary steps to prevent the spread of infection (see sickness and illness policy). If a child requires medicine we will obtain information about the child’s needs for this, and will ensure this information is kept up-to-date.
When dealing with medication of any kind in the nursery, strict guidelines will be followed.
- Prescription medicine will only be given to the person named on the bottle for the dosage stated
- Medicines must be in their original containers
- Prescribed antibiotics MUST be taken for 48 hours before a child can return to nursery.
- Those with parental responsibility of any child requiring prescription medication should allow a senior member of staff to have sight of the bottle. The staff member should note the details of the administration on the appropriate form and another member of staff should check these details
- Those with parental responsibility must give prior written permission for the administration of each and every medication. However we will accept written permission once for a whole course of medication or for the ongoing use of a particular medication under the following circumstances:
- The written permission is only acceptable for that brand name of medication and cannot be used for similar types of medication, e.g. if the course of antibiotics changes, a new form will need to be completed
- The dosage on the written permission is the only dosage that will be administered. We will not give a different dose unless a new form is completed
- Parents should notify us IMMEDIATELY if the child’s circumstances change, e.g. a dose has been given at home, or a change in strength/dose needs to be given.
- The nursery will not administer a dosage that exceeds the recommended dose on the instructions unless accompanied by a doctor’s letter
- The parent must be asked when the child had last been given the medication before coming to nursery; this information will be recorded on the medication form. Similarly when the child is picked up, the parent or guardian must be given precise details of the times and dosage given throughout the day. The parent’s signature must be obtained at both times
- At the time of administering the medicine, a senior member of staff will ask the child to take the medicine, or offer it in a manner acceptable to the child at the prescribed time and in the prescribed form. (It is important to note that staff working with children are not legally obliged to administer medication)
- If the child refuses to take the appropriate medication then a note will be made on the form
- Where medication is “essential” or may have side effects, discussion with the parent will take place to establish the appropriate response
- Wherever possible ask parents to request that GPs prescribe the least number of doses per day, i.e. three x daily, rather than four x daily.
- The nursery will only administer non-prescription medication in the form of barrier creams and teething gels, paracetamol and anti-histamines.
- All other medicines, must be prescribed by a doctor. With the child’s name clearly labelled.
- On registration, parents will be asked if they would like to fill out a medication form for a specific type of liquid paracetamol, which can be given in the case of an increase in the child’s temperature. This form will state the dose to be given, the circumstances in which this can be given e.g. the temperature increase of their child, this may be administered in an emergency.
- If a child does require liquid paracetamol during the day and the parents cannot be contacted then the nursery manager will take the decision as to whether the child is safe to have this medication based on the time the child has been in the nursery, the circumstances surrounding the need for this medication and the medical history of the child on their registration form. Giving liquid paracetamol will be a last resort and the nursery staff will use other methods first to try and reduce a child’s temperature, e.g. remove clothing, fanning, tepid cooling with a wet flannel. The child will be closely monitored until the parents collect the child
- For any non-prescription cream for skin conditions e.g. Sudocrem, prior written permission must be obtained from the parent and the onus is on the parent to provide the cream which should be clearly labelled with the child’s name
- If any child is brought to the nursery in a condition in which he/she may require medication sometime during the day, the manager will decide if the child is fit to be left at the nursery. If the child is staying, the parent must be asked if any kind of medication has already been given, at what time and in what dosage and this must be stated on the medication form
- As with any kind of medication, staff will ensure that the parent is informed of any non-prescription medicines given to the child whilst at the nursery, together with the times and dosage given
- In the case of medication that may need to be given to a child due to them becoming ill during the day, e.g. liquid paracetamol for temperature reduction, parents will be contacted as soon as possible to ensure all details are correct and that they agree with the dosage being given.
Injections, pessaries, suppositories
As the administration of injections, pessaries and suppositories represents intrusive nursing, they should not be administered by any member of staff unless appropriate medical training is given to each member of staff caring for this child. This training would be specific for each child and not generic. If this causes a problem in providing appropriate care of a child, please consult Ofsted.
The first aid box for staff should be kept in a readily accessible position, but out of reach of the children.
First aid boxes should only contain items permitted by the Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations Act 1981, such as sterile dressing, bandages, and eye pads. No other medical items, such as paracetamol should be kept in the first aid box.
All medication for children must have the child’s name clearly written on the original container and kept in a closed box, which is out of reach of all children.
Emergency medication, such as inhalers and epi-pens, will be within easy reach of staff in case of an immediate need, but will remain out of children’s reach and under supervision at all times.
Any antibiotics requiring refrigeration must be kept in an area inaccessible to children.
All medications must be in their original containers, legible and not tampered with or they will not be given. All prescription medications should have the pharmacist’s details and notes attached to show the dosage needed and the date the prescription was issued. This will all be checked, along with expiry dates, before staff agree to administer medication.