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Delaware Health Alert Network #321

April 29, 2014 9:53 am


Health Alert
ROUTINE HEALTH EXAMINATIONS FOR SCHOOL ENTRY AND SPORTS PARTICIPATION


Summary

All students in Delaware public schools are required to present an appropriately completed and current health examination form including documentation of current immunizations; upon school entry, prior to ninth (9th) grade, and annually prior to participation in interscholastic sports.

Background

A student’s mental and physical health can impact their ability to function in school. Delaware schools require current (within 2 years) information on each student’s health, along with any specific conditions which may interfere with the learning process. Documentation of a health examination is due prior to school entry at any age, prior to entry into the ninth (9th) grade, and annually prior to participation in interscholastic sports. (http://regulations.delaware.gov/AdminCode/title14/800/815.shtml#TopOfPage)

The student’s primary medical provider should perform the health examination as the provider most knowledgeable of the student’s family, previous illnesses, immunization status, and other background factors that affect the total health status of the student. The primary medical provider is also in a position to institute any necessary therapeutic measures without delay. The state requires an examination at school entry, prior to ninth grade, and for participation in sports.

Recommendations

The Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) is reminding all health care providers who regularly attend to children that students are beginning to get school entry and sports physicals in preparation for the 2014-2015 school year.

Routine health examinations are recommended by reputable health organizations including the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Family Physicians. These examinations are important for all children because they provide clinicians an opportunity for health promotion and early identification of health conditions that could impact the child’s well-being and academic success. Unlike young children who have regular scheduled well child visits with their primary healthcare provider, older children rarely do so and may only see their clinician when they are unwell. For them, this might be the only opportunity for the clinician to review their health history, immunizations, results of medical testing and screenings, prescribed medications and treatments.

DPH strongly encourages you to take every opportunity when working with a school age child to ask about and complete the health appraisal form. It goes a long way in protecting health, and improving overall academic and physical performance.

School Entry & Ninth Grade Health Examination forms are available at: http://www.doe.k12.de.us/infosuites/ddoe/aboutdoe/workgroups/parents_families.shtml

DIAA Interscholastic Sports Medical Form are available at: http://www.doe.k12.de.us/infosuites/students_family/diaa/forms.shtml

(Note: The DIAA form can be used to meet the requirement for Ninth Grade entry.)

For more information, call the Department of Education at 302-735-4060 or the DPH Immunization Program at 1-800-282-8672 or 302-744-1060.

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