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The School Decided To Take His Asthma Inhaler Away, And It Cost This 12-Year-Old Boy His Life!

29 January 2017 1343 views
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During recess at his school this 12-year-old boy, named Ryan Gibbons, died after suffering a severe asthma attack.

Normally, he would simply have pulled the prescription inhaler, that he always carried with him, from his pocket, but his school made the dangerous, and deadly choice to take it away from him and lock it in the principal's office.

On October 9, 2012, as Ryan gasped for air, he was picked up by his friends and carried all the way to the office where his inhaler was being kept.

Sadly, however, they couldn't reach the office in time. Before they could get him within reach of his potentially life-saving medicine, Ryan passed out and he never recovered. 

This horrific tragedy happened at Elgin County School in Straffordville, Ontario, Canada. And now, Sarah Gibbons, Ryan's grieving mom, is leading the campaign to have schools change this senseless policy of keeping these life-saving inhalers away from the asthmatic children that need them - by law.

The bill, called "Ryan's Law," to honor her son's memory, has been introduced to lawmakers in the hopes that they will pass it. The proposed law forces schools to allow kids with a doctor's okay to carry their inhalers with them in school, either in a pocket or their backpack.

According to Gibbons, her son would often bring a spare inhaler with him to school for just this reason. What if it wasn't possible to make it to the principal's office in time? However, again and again, the school officials took it from him.

"I received many a phone call stating Ryan had taken an inhaler to school and they found it in his bag and would like me to come pick it up because he wasn't even allowed to bring it home with him," said Ryan's mom in an interview with Canada's national TV network, the CBC. "There's supposed to be one in the office and that's the only one he can have. I didn't understand why."

Truly, it is mind-boggling trying to understand this policy! What reason could a school possibly have for this crazy anti-inhaler policy? In the United States, laws have already been passed in all 50 states allowing children with asthma to carry their inhalers in school - however that doesn't stop some American schools from not letting them anyway!

According to one expert, schools are sometimes afraid that they'll be hit with liability claims if a student doesn't administer his or her own medication correctly or if they let another kid share their inhaler.

"I understand these concerns, but what's the liability in allowing a child with asthma to exercise without having access to an inhaler when a nurse may or may not even be at the school?" asks Maureen George, professor of nursing at the University of Pennsylvania.

She goes on to say that sometimes schools will ban inhalers under a blanket anti-drug policy too.

"But do prescription medications really need to be grouped with illicit drugs?" asks George.

What do you think about this tragic occurrence? Do you believe that the laws should be changed, allowing children with asthma to carry their inhalers?

Let us know in the comments below and please make sure to 'SHARE' this important message to everyone on Facebook! 

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