Was Nurse Lay Off The Right Move?

by nph | September 23rd, 2011

September 23, 2011

When a 9-year-old girl collapsed and died in a Dayton, Ohio, elementary school, parents began to wonder if the School Board’s decision to lay off one-third of it’s nursing staff two months prior to the incident was the right move.

According to the Dayton Daily News, in July, the Dayton School District laid off ten nurses. One of which was the nurse at Westwood School, where the girl attended. On Tuesday, authorities say the girl arrived at school as normal and had breakfast. Within the hour, the girl told friends she was feeling dizzy and complained to her teacher that she was not feeling well and was sent to an empty nurse’s office.

Since the lay off, Westwood shares a nurse with several other schools in the area. That day, the nurse was at Belmont High, giving vision tests.

The girl collapsed while walking to the unmanned nursing station, and within moments school staff had summoned paramedics and began CPR. She was taken to Good Samaritan Hospital, but died a short time later of yet to be determined causes.

Due to state budget cuts, Dayton Public Schools now has 21 nurses in 30 facilities, and only 10 of those are full time at one school.

The Ohio Medical Malpractice Lawyers with Nurenberg, Paris, Heller & McCarthy agree that state guidelines of a nurse to student ratio of 750 to 1, as determined fit by the Ohio Department of Education and National Association of School Nurses, should be followed in order to protect student’s well-being.