Student given wrong prescription at Albany school, mother asks how
December 12, 2017 06:50 PM
A mother is calling out an Albany school after her fourth grader was given the wrong prescription.
Melissa Delgado sends her 9-year-old son to the Neil Hellman School at Parsons on Academy Road in Albany with a locked box of his prescriptions. But she never sent in any medication the day that he got the wrong pills. Delgado is still trying to figure out where the prescription her fourth grader was given at school, came from.
"Since he didn't bring in that locked box, the school and the nurses didn't get the medication. They didn't count it, didn't log it. Why was my child call into the office that day to take medication?" said Delgado.
Her son, Xavier Rivera, takes Ritalin for his ADHD. It helps him stay still and focus. Parsons is a school for children with special needs.
On November 21, Delgado got a call from the head nurse at the Neil Hellman School at Parsons in Albany. She said Xavier had been given Focalin instead of Ritalin. Delgado says the head nurse explained it was another student's prescription.
"When I spoke to the head nurse, she told me this is not the first time we had a medication error, so now that makes me even more worried," said Delgado.
In an email, William Getman Jr., the head of the organization running the school, admits staff gave a student the "incorrect medication" and they noticed during "a scheduled medication count".
Delgado doesn't think it was an accident.
"So I feel, they took it upon themselves to give him an alternative medicine. It was in the same family from the medication he does take, so I think they just did it so he can have medication that day and they wouldn't have to deal with his struggles if he didn't get medication," said Delgado.
Delgado worries it could've been worse if it reacted with his other medications. He used to take Focalin, but was taken off the drug because it gave him low blood pressure.
Now, she refuses to send in any medication for Xavier to take at school.
After an internal investigation, the school says its making changes to reduce distractions for staff. The nurse is under closer supervision.
William T. Gettman Jr., the CEO of Northern Rivers Family of Services, sent NewsChannel 13 this statement:
"When it comes to keeping children safe, one mistake is too many, and we are fully aware of the importance of our every action. Every day, we work to refine our efforts to protect those in our care.
On the date in question, a child received one dose of an incorrect medication. We discovered the error soon thereafter during a scheduled medication count, our medical team, including our staff psychiatrist, immediately verified that no adverse effects were to be expected and provided the child’s guardian the information. As per our policy, an internal investigation was launched and a report was submitted to the appropriate regulatory body. This report included already-implemented corrective action steps including increased supervision during the distribution of medication.
In addition to ongoing monitoring, training and support, corrective action steps regarding the distribution of medication that have been implemented include environmental changes made at the facility to reduce the possibility of distraction for medical staff on duty. Additionally, the Registered Nurse involved in this situation has been placed on increased supervision by the Director of Nursing when dispensing medication."
The state education department had no comment.
Updated: December 12, 2017 06:50 PM
Created: December 12, 2017 05:26 PM
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