Senator Flanagan’s Legislation To Protect Students With Medical Conditions Passes Senate

John J. Flanagan

June 23, 2014

Legislation sponsored by Senator John Flanagan (2nd Senate District) which will provide relief to students who struggle with respiratory diseases or diabetes has passed the New York State Senate.  The legislation (S7758) allows students who utilize an inhaler or other prescribed equipment or medication to carry and use these devices in school and at school functions. 

               Senator Flanagan’s legislation will standardize policies and practices regarding self-administered medications in all school districts throughout the state whether they are used for allergic reactions, asthma attacks or dangerous blood sugar levels.  The legislation also adheres to the guidance from New York State Education Department (NYSED) and its School Health Services Center which have over the years issued guidelines about best practices for student health services including those for students with asthma, allergies and diabetes. 

               The approved legislation would still enable NYSED to provide guidance to school districts regarding policies governing student self-management of allergies, asthma or diabetes and school responsibilities to respond to students with such health conditions.  Additionally, the legislation makes clear that school districts would not be financially or legally liable for their efforts to comply with the provisions of this legislation.

               “This is a common-sense approach to an important, growing issue in our state that will help our students help themselves.  Allergies and other medical conditions can be serious life-threatening issues for many New York students and providing them with the ability to utilize the medications they need in a timely fashion could prove extremely valuable.  That will allow them to concentrate on their studies while giving their families some needed peace of mind,” stated Senator Flanagan.

               The legislation has also passed the New York State Assembly, where it was sponsored by Assemblymember Catherine Nolan (37th Assembly District), and would take effect on July 1st if signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo.