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New York State Passes Bill to Allow School Bus Drivers to Administer Epinephrine

New York State Passes Bill to Allow School Bus Drivers to Administer Epinephrine

New York State Legislature recently passed a bill that if signed into law will allow school bus company employees and employees of other school contractors to administer epinephrine using auto-injectors such as EpiPen.

The new bill, sponsored by State Assemblyman David Buchwald (D-Westchester), could make the difference between life or death for children with severe allergies.

"We previously passed legislation authorizing school officials to administer epinephrine auto-injectors but most school bus drivers work for independent companies, not the school district,” explained Assemblyman Buchwald in a press release. “This legislation will authorize employees of firms providing services to school districts to deliver this vitally important protection to our youngsters who have severe allergies.”

With so many children being bussed to and from school each day, having the only adult on board trained to give a shot of epinephrine will have many New York State parents breathing a sigh of relief. 

“When a child experiences anaphylaxis, there is simply not enough time to wait for emergency personnel to arrive on the scene. Recently, a school bus driver in Massachusetts saved a student’s life when emergency personnel could not arrive on the scene in time. I am so pleased that New York school bus drivers will be able to do the same,” said Chappaqua resident Stacey Saiontz in the press release.

The Senate passed the bill unanimously in late July and it will be sent to Governor Andrew Cuomo later this year for review. It is hoped the bill will become a law in the future. However, it's important that students with severe allergies carry and know how to administer epinephrine auto-injectors, such as EpiPen, themselves.

“It's great news that the State Assembly has passed the bill and we thank Assemblyman Buchwald for his leadership on this issue,” said Jon Terry, founder of the Allergy Advocates Association, in the press release. “The Assemblyman’s bill covers a big loophole in student school bus transportation that we were greatly concerned about. We are hopeful the bill will be signed into law so that school bus drivers, who work for independent companies, will be able to administer EpiPens when children in their care suffer life-threatening allergic reactions.”


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