Other Specific Conditions > Asthma > Use of Asthma Inhalers In Schools (PA Law: Act 187)

Use of Asthma Inhalers In Schools (Pa. Law:  Act 187)


In order to ensure that a child has his or her asthma medication immediately available in when an asthma attack occurs, Pennsylvania has enacted a law (Act 187) requiring schools to develop a written policy that allows school aged children to carry (possess) and use (self-administer) their asthma medication.


Schools should be able to provide a copy of their policy.


Each school’s policy should require that a child:

  • Be able to demonstrate the ability to use the inhaler
  • Behave responsibly when using the inhaler
  • Notify the school nurse immediately following each use of an asthma inhaler
A school has the right to deny the privilege to carry an inhaler, or to restrict its use, if school policies are abused or ignored.


A school’s policy may require:

·   A written statement from the child’s health care provider that provides:

o        the name of the medication

o        the dose

o        the times when medication is to be taken

o        the diagnosis or reason medicine is needed (unless this is confidential)

o        information on serious reactions that could occur and appropriate 
   emergency responses

o        that the child is qualified and able to self-administer the medication

·   A written statement from the parent or guardian that:

o        the school follow the health care providers orders

o        the school entity and/or school employee be relieved of any 
   responsibility for the benefits or consequences of the prescribed

o        the school bears no responsibility for ensuring that the medication is taken

·   The right of the school to require a statement from the health care provider for continued use of any medication beyond a specified time period.