Dispensing of Medicine in Schools

In terms of the Medicines and Related Substances Amendment Act, medical practitioners and other health professionals such as physiotherapists and nurses are required to have a licence on the authority of the Director-General of Health in order to dispense and compound medicines subject to prescribed conditions.

This effectively means that a headmaster, matron or school secretary is not in a position to make a determination of what medication a sick child needs as they are not health professionals. It is preferable that a school make every effort to take a sick child to the nearest hospital.

For schools that may employ a nurse, it is important to remember the nurse is required to obtain a licence to dispense medicine.

Special conditions may apply when a parent provides permission for the school to administer a prescribed medication, or in cases of extreme emergency.

Please download the memo from the ISASA policy unit for additional information.

Dispensing of Medicine
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