School operations

Health Care Needs

1. The 4 stages of developing a Student Health Support Plan

Schools must follow the 4 stages to develop a Student health support plan (DOCX)External Link or any other specific health management plan – for example, the anaphylaxis management plan.

A student health support plan is required for students who:

  • need medical or health-related support at school
  • have health care needs or conditions that may impact the student at school
  • have health care needs or conditions that may impact their engagement and participation in education.

Stage 1 – Before enrolment

Principals should inform parents or carers about the school’s policy for supporting student health prior to and on enrolment.

Stage 2 – When a need is identified

Principals should ensure that parents/carers provide accurate information about a student’s:

  • routine health care support needs, such as supervision for medication
  • personal care support needs, such as assistance with personal hygiene, continence care, eating and drinking, transfers and positioning, and use of health-related equipment
  • emergency care needs, such as predictable emergency first aid associated with an allergic reaction, seizure management, anaphylaxis, or diabetes.

Schools should store information on CASES21 about:

  • the student’s health condition
  • medication to be stored and supervised at school.

Note: When information is being collected principals must ensure that parents/carers and students are informed about how their personal information will be used and who it might be disclosed to, such as school nurses.

Schools may request relevant information from, or share relevant information with all authorised services under the Child Information Sharing Scheme or the Family Violence Information Sharing Scheme. Refer to Privacy and Information Sharing, and the Child and Family Violence Information Sharing Schemes for further information.

Stage 3 – Planning process

The below information describes how schools plan for a student with health care needs to attend school, camps and excursions.

Step 1 – Medical advice from the student’s medical/ health practitioner

The student’s medical/health practitioner provides a medical advice form that:

  • guides the planning
  • details:
    • the student’s medical condition
    • medication required at school
    • recommended emergency and routine health and personal care support for the student.

Step 2 – Camps and excursions

In relation to camps and excursions, parents or carers complete a Confidential medical information for school excursions form (DOCX)External Link .

Refer to the department's policy on Excursions for further information.

Step 3 – Meeting with students and parents/carers

The principal or nominee organises a meeting to discuss the plan with:

  • the student
  • parents/carers
  • other school staff, if required.

The plan should be developed shortly after the school has received the medical advice from the student’s medical/health practitioner.

If there is a time delay between receiving this advice and developing the plan, the school may put in place an interim support plan containing an agreed strategy, such as calling an ambulance.

Questions for schools and parents or carer to consider
  • Is it necessary to provide the support during the school day?
  • How can the recommended support be provided in the simplest manner, with minimal interruption to the education and care program?
  • Who should provide the support?
  • Is this support complex and/or invasive?
  • Is there staff training required?
  • Are there any facilities issues that need to be addressed?
  • How can the support be provided in a way that respects dignity, privacy, comfort and safety and enhances learning?
  • Are there any care and learning plans that should be completed for students with personal care support?

Stage 4 – Monitoring and Review

Plans should be reviewed:

  • when updated information is received from the student’s medical or health practitioner
  • when the school, student or parents/carers have concerns in the support
  • if there is a change in support
  • at least annually.

The advice received from the medical or health practitioner is reviewed annually unless it is agreed that the annual review of the plan is not required. In this case, it is up to the principal’s discretion whether to request updated medical information.

Guidance chapter 1 outlining the planning process for developing a Student Health Support Plan for students with an identified health care need

Reviewed 05 April 2023

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