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Your Child's Asthma Action Plan at School

It's important to share your child's asthma action plan with his or her teacher and other school staff. If your child doesn't have an asthma action plan or it's not up-to-date, make sure you talk with his or her health care provider. What’s an action plan?

What's an asthma action plan?

This plan describes how to manage your child’s asthma. It includes information about your child's symptoms and medications. It also includes instructions about managing symptoms and when to call a health care provider.

An asthma action plan generally covers these topics:

  • Medications. Both controller and quick-relief medications are covered. Instructions about when to take the medications, based on symptoms or peak flow readings are included.

  • Asthma symptoms and triggers.  Your child's asthma symptoms and what to do if they should occur are described. Triggers or those things that make your child’s asthma worse may also be listed.

  • Exercise and recess. The medication and dose your child needs to take before recess, or exercise and activities your child needs to avoid, or special precautions to take, such as wearing a scarf or ski mask on cold days, or not exercising outdoors when pollen counts are high.

  • Emergency information. The name and phone number of your child’s health care provider. You should include emergency phone numbers and when to call the provider or emergency medical services.

Putting it all together

It’s a good idea to meet with your child's teachers and coaches, and other staff members at the start of each school year. Your child can be there, too. You may also need to meet at other times throughout the schools year. Make sure you discuss the following:

  • Asthma action plan. Review the plan. Make sure teachers know how to use an inhaler, spacer, and peak flow meter. Make sure they understand the action plan zones and what to do. Discuss any school policies that affect your child’s asthma management. For instance, some schools allow kids to keep their quick-relief medicine with them in their bag or locker, but other schools keep medications in the school office.

  • Triggers. If pet dander is a trigger, find out if animals, such as gerbils or hamsters, are kept in the classroom.

  • Special activities. For example, ask how medication will be handled during field trips.