Illinois Adopts New Asthma “Right to Carry” Law

Illinois adopts legislation permitting schoolchildren with asthma to carry their quick relief asthma medication while at school, provided they have physician and parent approval. The legislation follows several asthma emergencies in which asthma medications were kept locked away in school and were unavailable when needed. Respiratory Health Association co-led the policy effort and subsequent amendments to extend the law to after-school and park district activities.

RHA Formalizes Commitment to Legislative Advocacy

RHA formalizes its organizational commitment to play an active role in legislative advocacy as a means of achieving the prevention and control of lung disease. Eventually RHA would play a significant role in many legislative advocacy efforts, including protection of federal and state clean air legislation and the passage of smoke-free laws in Chicago and Illinois, among other locations.

Illinois Schools Required to Adopt Asthma Protocols

Illinois Public Act 099-0843 is signed by Governor Bruce Rauner on August 19, 2016, requiring Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to develop a model asthma episode emergency response protocol, and for each school district, charter school, and non-public school to adopt a similar protocol, including all the components of the ISBE model protocol, by January 1, 2017. The model protocol and other resources are available on the ISBE website.

Schools are also required to request an asthma action plan from each parent of a student with asthma. If provided, the asthma action plan must be kept on file in the office of the school nurse or, in the absence of a school nurse, the school administrator.

Finally, the law requires school personnel who work with pupils to complete training on the management of asthma, prevention of asthma symptoms, and emergency response in the school setting every two years. RHA’s one-hour Asthma Management program meets this requirement and educates teachers, school staff and other caregivers of children with asthma.

Date: August 19, 2016

CPS Approves Asthma Policy

On January 26, 2012, Chicago Public School Board of Education approves a new asthma policy, increasing awareness and support of students with asthma. The new policy reduces barriers for students to carry and self-medicate using their quick-relief inhalers. It also requires administrators to ask for information about students with asthma at the beginning of each school year, including asthma action plans; and all staff who interact with children will receive asthma training every two years.