A new education law in Florida requires the creation and administration of individualized seizure action plans for students with disabilities. Students with epilepsy or other seizure disorders are cared for by members of the school’s staff whenever they experience seizures. The purpose of this health care legislation is to alleviate the symptoms of the student while in school and prevent a medical emergency from becoming life-threatening.
New law protects disabled students
Governor DeSantis signed HB 173 into education law, and the bill requires schools to develop individualized action plans for students with epilepsy and other seizure disorders. The bill was unanimously approved by lawmakers.
Each plan has to be created in coordination with the student’s parents and doctors. Included are the student’s basic personal details and medical emergency contact information along with their underlying health conditions, recurring symptoms and medications. Additional information is included about the student’s hobbies and extracurricular activities.
Mandatory medical training
As part of the action plan, school employees are trained on how to identify and treat the symptoms of epilepsy or other seizure disorders. Every authorized person who handles the individualized Seizure Action Plan has to maintain it in the student’s file. The information found in the plan is available to every employee who is in regular contact with the student. This Florida law is designed after the Epilepsy Foundation’s Seizure Safe Schools’ model bill, and similar laws were passed in 14 other states.
Medical emergency laws in U.S. schools
Florida is one of many states that wants to ensure that all students with seizure disorders are protected during their medical emergencies. No two disabled students have the same episodes, and a health crisis could happen at any moment. A law helps ensure that they are cared for with the addition of individualized seizure action plans.