An estimated 55 million students nationwide from pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade head back into the classrooms in only a few weeks. The nation’s emergency physicians want every student to get to school safely and remain safe and healthy throughout the year.

The American College of Emergency Physician’s (ACEP), according to a press release, has created a list of medical priorities that should go right along with those lists that include buying pencils, notebooks and backpacks:
  • Organize your child’s medical history records and emergency medical contact information. Provide a copy of this information to your child’s school or daycare provider with instructions to take it with them to the emergency department if your child is sick or injured. The form should include information related to prescription medications, medical problems, or previous surgeries as well as pertinent family history and emergency contacts.
  • Fill out consent-to-treat forms and give one to the school or your daycare provider for them to keep in your child’s record and to take with them if your child goes to the emergency department. The form will allow caregivers to authorize treatment in an emergency situation.
  • Schedule medical and dental check-ups before school starts. Some children may need immunizations.
  • Review and do a dry run of your child’s route to school, explaining potential hazards along the way. This is a good time to discuss safety rules and what to be on the lookout for with your child.
  • If your child takes the school bus, establish a safe, visible pick up/drop off spot, preferably with a group of additional children and in an area where they can be clearly watched by adults.
  • If your child drives to school, make sure they obey all laws and wear seatbelts. Also remind them that more children are waiting outside for school buses at that time and that more cars are on the roadways and all drivers need to stay alert.
  • Make sure the children understand potential traffic dangers, especially if they walk to school.
  • Make sure your children know how to telephone for help. Post emergency-contact numbers by every telephone in your home. Have them practice how to call 911 or the local emergency number, and giving their name, address and a brief description of the problem.
  • Develop a family emergency plan in case something happens on the way to or while at school.
  • Be aware of any emergency and evacuation plans your children’s schools may have established.
Any of these necessary medical forms can be found on ACEP’s Emergency Care for You website: