Sunday, August 18, 2013

Ready or Not...

So, I have completed my first week of working for a school district.  In my former life, I was a teacher with this same district, and went through orientation with them back in 2001.  Returning as a school nurse, they weren't quite sure what to do with me, and I was told to attend their Novice Teacher Academy last week.  They have a great, week-long program for new teachers who are new to teaching or new to the district, but don't have a clue how to support new nurses.  After two days of attending sessions that did not benefit me in any way, I was able to attend a training specifically for nurses.

We met at one of the high schools, and were given guidance on how to use the online documentation system that is used district-wide.  Somehow, I don't have access to that software yet, and cannot enter in my new students into the system.  We were also given information on how to handle specific situations that might arise as a school nurse, and that was very helpful.  Thursday, I worked on setting up and organizing the clinic, and Friday, I had a day off for the first time in what feels like forever.

Tomorrow is the first day that all of the teachers return.  I am looking forward to meeting everyone at my school, and continuing to figure out my role as a new school nurse.  I can plan and prepare all that I want, but reality sets in on the 26th when the students return for their first day of school.  Eek!

Monday, August 12, 2013

August is National Immunization Awareness Month

Working in a pediatrician's office and now a public school, I am constantly reviewing vaccine records to ensure that children are up to date on their vaccines.  All students entering public school in Texas (and elsewhere) need to have a tetanus booster (TDaP), their first meningitis vaccine, two doses of Varicella (chicken pox) and two doses of Hepatitis A before they can attend seventh grade.  It's also not too early to get flu vaccine for the coming season; Flumist is being distributed to providers already, with injectable flu vaccine not too far behind.

Vaccines can be received as part of the yearly well child exam, at some pharmacies or clinics inside grocery stores/drug stores, or in free clinics offered in certain areas.  Local health departments give vaccines, as well.  Texas discontinued their free Shots Across Texas program in 2012 due to less children qualifying for the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program.

August is National Immunization Awareness Month, so I want to remind parents to keep a current copy of your child's vaccines and review them annually to ensure there are none needed.  If your child has yearly wellness exams, your doctor will review his/her vaccine record at that visit.

Here are some good resources with information regarding vaccines:

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Going back to school

No, I'm not going back to school as a student, though I really should do that someday; instead, I finally got hired for my dream job, as a school nurse.  I am so excited, yet terrified!  This is what I've wanted for quite a while now; it's more money, and I will be off when my kids are.  I haven't seen the clinic yet, but am anxiously looking forward to it.  Anyone have any great school nurse blogs to share?  I need ideas for bulletin boards, supplies to get, resources that would be useful, etc...
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