Here is a special guest rant from Mrs. TEH:
This morning I wrote a note to my daughter's school to request that they give her a cold medicine at lunch time today. I just received a phone call from the school nurse explaining that they would give her the medicine today, but that the school policy doesn't allow them to dispense any kind of medicine without a doctor's note. Not even over the counter medicine.
How silly of me to think that I had the authority to decide when my child needs an over the counter medication to help alleviate symptoms she's experiencing so she can get through her day. I guess I forgot my place as the parent and tried to over-ride authority and buck the system.
What in the world do they think? I'm going to try to pump some drugs into my child that she doesn't need for the fun of it? For crying out loud, if I were going to pump drugs into my child for some reason that wasn't ethical, moral, or even legal, I wouldn't be doing it blatantly in front of witnesses that have to record everything they give her. I also wouldn't go to the trouble and expense to package it in sealed packaging from the manufacturer.
I attempted not to get upset with the nurse over this. After all, she's just doing her job and following the rules set before her. She has a family to take care of too. However, I did explain to her that when I have to get a note from the doctor, it's not as simple as they think. I have to call the doctor's office which usually means waiting on hold. Once I get through to the receptionist, then I have to wait on hold for the nurse's line. Sometimes I might get through after several minutes of holding (if I'm really lucky that day - like today, thank goodness), other times it is 10, 15, or 20 minutes. I have waited more than an hour and a half before! You might think this is a problem with my child's doctor's office that should be addressed with them, or maybe I should switch offices. However, I think they are busy taking care of patients in the office and answering calls, for which they are not being paid, as they can. As I understand it, this office is really no different than any others. Not only that, I like our doctor.
Anyway, after I get through to the nurse at the doctor's office, I then have to explain the situation and ask them to write a note. The school nurse advised a "carte blanche" note that says she can xyz as needed. This note should last for the year.
In a way this is no different than ibuprofen which I send in for her at the beginning of the year. She must have a doctor's note for that as well, however, I thought that was because it is ongoing and is to be allowed whenever she has a headache or other ache or pain. She has had frequent headaches in the past and I trust her to know when she needs one. She only gets one at a time and the doctor's office told us to let her have it as needed several years ago. Each school year I get a new note for that.
I am miffed that I can't just send in a cold medicine to alleviate her symptoms for a few days for a simple thing like a cold or sore throat.
The school nurse also stated that I could have the doctor's office fax the note to them so they could have it on record right away today. I explained to her that the doctor's office won't do that anymore. They cannot (will not?) fax to third parties. The school nurse seemed surprised about this. I explained that this makes it even more difficult because we have to stop by their office to pick up the note.
So, now I have time on the phone and time to pick up the note involved. Of course, this would be much worse if I couldn't have the doctor's office write a note for an "as needed" basis, then I would have to go through this every time she needed something. At least this way I can do it once a year.
However, the note is generic - no specific medicine listed. It's like the doctor is writing a permission slip for me to send in medicine to the school for her - as long as it's related to specific symptoms. It's almost as if it's not a note for my daughter, but to authorize me? Which brings up a good point. Now my daughter could bring in any cold medicine or cough drop she wanted and it would be covered under the doctor's note. She could become addicted to them and hide them from me and take them in to the school and have them during the day, couldn't she? At least with a note from me, it is authorized with the specific medicine each time she actually needs it. I always sign and date the notes and make them for specific days. I guess she could also forge a note from me too if that was all that was required.
I just wonder, what is the point? Why can't I be the parent any more? Since when do we not allow over the counter medications to be authorized by parents?
Also, along those lines, I have to get a doctor's note to have my children taken out of school or even an extra cirricular activity. If I sign them out for the appointment and/or back into the office for the appointment, why isn't that enough? Why must I bother the doctor for yet another note? Maybe in high school when they are driving and they could just take off on their own for an appointment, but why when they are so young and must be escorted by a driving adult? Do that many parents really skip school with their kids that they can't be trusted to take their own children? I mean, we are the parents and we can take them out if we want to anyway, can't we? I know they need an education and all, but are there really parents out there who are saying their kid went to the doctor when they were really just plain skipping school?
I must either be very nieve or stupid.