ILLINOIS (IASN) -- Students across Illinois are gearing up to head back to the classroom. To help families prepare, the Illinois Association of School Nurses (IASN) shares five simple items to their back-to-school checklist, ensuring a smooth transition into the 2014-2015 school year.
1. Get required physicals. Outside of any regularly scheduled checkup, remember that in Illinois, physicals are required for students entering kindergarten, 6th and 9th grade, as well as for students participating in sports activities.
2. Make sure your immunizations are up-to-date. Vaccinations are available to protect youth against 16 serious and potentially life threatening diseases, and many are required before students can begin classes. The state’s vaccination requirements have changed slightly this year – the full list is available at http://www.idph.state.il.us/about/pgci.htm. Beginning next year, additional boosters to protect against meningitis will be required – it’s never too early to start conversations with your doctor to learn more about these immunizations and ensure that all requirements are met.
3. Go see the dentist. Although regular dentist visits are recommended, in Illinois, dental visits are required for students entering kindergarten, 2nd and 6th grade.
4. Schedule an eye exam, making sure needed prescription eyewear are obtained before the first day of school. A vision exam is required for kindergartners.
5. For parents of children with chronic health problems – such as asthma, diabetes, allergies, seizures, etc. – make sure you update your school nurse on any changes to your child’s health or medication.
IASN promotes wellness and educational success of school communities by supporting, developing and advocating for professional school nurse leaders. To learn more visit www.iasn.org.