Posted: March 12th, 2023
The gathering and keeping of medical information regarding students presents an important challenge for educators. It requires the balancing of multiple goals, including providing a safe environment while also protecting student’s privacy. There are numerous ways to gather and keep medical information regarding students in order to provide the best care possible, while still maintaining confidentiality standards.
One way to gather this information is through classroom health screenings. For example, school nurses or other medical staff could review certain physical parameters such as height, weight, vision acuity and hearing levels (Cox et al., 2020). Additionally, screenings can include questions about existing conditions that may indicate potential need for further evaluation or intervention by healthcare providers outside of school (Cox et al., 2020). This type of data collection does not require personally identifiable information from students so it helps maintain their privacy as well as identifying individuals who may have undiagnosed chronic illnesses or acute illnesses requiring treatment (Cox et al., 2020).
Another way to collect and store medical information on students is through parental consent forms. These forms allow parents to authorize access to their children’s health records in order for them to be educated in a safe environment with appropriate accommodations if needed (Cook & Edwards-Stewart, 2019). Parental consent forms should be updated regularly because they often contain sensitive personal information such as allergies, immunization status and medications taken on a regular basis (Cook & Edwards-Stewart, 2019). It is also important for these forms to be stored securely either electronically or via paper filing systems depending on what the district regulations dictate (Cook & Edwards-Stewart2019). If electronic storage system is utilized then confidential files should only be accessible by authorized personnel with password protection measures in place (Cook & Edwards-Stewart, 2019)
In addition there are concerns associated with gathering and storing medical data that must be addressed when developing policies related health record management. One major concern is privacy which involves safeguarding personal data held by educational institutions from unauthorized users both inside and outside the organization(Krchnakova et al., 2017; Cook & Edwards-Stewart 2019), Another issue relates to legal compliance specifically Health Insurance Portability Accountability Act which mandates physical safeguards over how protected health info can collected used displaced exchanged transmitted destroyed etc.(Centers for Medicare& Medicaid Services2008; Krchnakova et al., 2017 ) A third concern relates patient/student autonomy which includes informed consent procedures prior any disclosure of protected health info studentstheir families.(Krchnakova et al .2017 ; Coxetal2020)
In conclusion ,gathering ,keeping ,maintaining accurate up -to -date confidentialmedicalinformation regardingstudents plays key rolein promotingtheir safetyoverallwellbeingeducationalinstitutionsmust develop comprehensive policiesprocedures addressingissuesoutlinedabove .suchpoliciesprocedures should involve collaboration amongvarious stakeholdersincludinghealthcareprovidersteachersadministratorsparentsguardiansandotherrelevantparties ensureclear communicationregardingdatacollectionstorageconsentprocessesaswellassecuritymeasuresplace protectprivacywhilecomplyingwithlegal requirementsrelatedtoconfidentially offamily educational rightsprivacyactferpaandhipaaamongother applicablelaws .
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