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Boy died of asthma because school locked away his inhaler. Has the world gone crazy?

Canadian Living
Culture & Entertainment

Boy died of asthma because school locked away his inhaler. Has the world gone crazy?

A 12-year-old boy, Ryan Gibbons, died on October 9, 2012 from a severe asthma attack while at recess at his Ontario school. He had an inhaler, but it wasn't on him. It was locked up in the principal's office, according to the CBC. Not only that, staff had "confiscated" inhalers from Gibbons in the past, according to the report. I'm sorry. Say what now? Why would you confiscate an inhaler from a 12-year-old child? It's not a flipping iPhone. It's not a pack of cigarettes. I'm sure the school or the board had a reason, I just fail to see what that could be considering a child's life is at stake. Life. Is. At. Stake. I write this from a position where I understand too well the dangers of not allowing kids to carry their own meds. My son has an life-threatening nut and peanut allergy. [ Here's how to manage scary allergy situations: worth a read for every parent or anyone who is ever in charge of children.] My little guy carries an EpiPen with him wherever he goes, since the age of 3 when he could understand and tolerate wearing a little belt that holds the auto-injector. He was not responsible for administering the auto-injector, of course, but it was at hand if ever it were needed. You can't keep life-saving prescriptions  only locked up in the principal's office (though you certainly can have an extra one stored there, I am all for that) because guess what…things can go wrong when medications are locked out of reach. A life-saving allergy intervention is not the same as having access to Tylenol or Tums, or Band-Aids. For heaven's sake, kids need to have these kinds of meds on them. Ryan's mom, Sandra Gibbons, has made a huge effort in getting a new bill passed in Ontario, Ryan's Law (Ensuring Asthma Friendly Schools). I fully support this effort -- the bill has carried through the second reading and is now referred to the standing committee for social policy. Let's not let another child die this way. -Helen (Photo credit: Magnus ManskeWikimedia Commons.)
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Boy died of asthma because school locked away his inhaler. Has the world gone crazy?

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