Nationwide Shortage Of School Nurses Called A “Crisis” That May Be Putting Kids’ Lives At Risk

(CBS) — Only three out of five schools across the country have full-time school nurses often forcing school administrators, with no medical training, to step in and provide some level of care.

The role of the school nurse is more critical than ever, with a quarter of all young children suffering some kind of chronic illness, like asthma and diabetes. Over the past several years, multiple children have died after facing medical emergencies in their schools when no nurse was on duty, reports Hilary Lane.

Last October, Rasheen Pressley’s 9-year-old son Hasoun collapsed in the school cafeteria. He was rushed to the hospital where he was later pronounced dead of heart failure.

“They failed him all ways. Like they wasn’t there to help him,” Pressley said. “He was my only son. … there weren’t nobody there to help him. Nothing.”

There was no school nurse on duty that day. According to a Philadelphia school district official, staff certified in CPR tried to revive Hasoun who’d been born with a heart defect. It’s unknown had a school nurse been there that day if they would have been able to save him.

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