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Preventing Allergic Reactions to Latex in the School Environment -- SHNIC Educators Information

It is important that all school staff be educated regarding latex allergy using information such as this guide. The existing recommendation by experts for preventing latex allergic reactions at school is to avoid exposure to latex. In order to do this, staff should survey their instructional (i.e., classrooms, gym, playground) or treatment (i.e., health suite, cafeteria) environments to identify items that contain latex, thereby posing a potential risk for exposure. These items should be removed from the environment and replaced with alternative non-latex materials. A list of items typically found in schools that contain latex and suggested substitutions is included on the following page. This list is not totally inclusive, as new items are constantly being produced. If you are not certain whether an item contains latex, check with suppliers prior to using it with a student who is sensitive or allergic to latex. It is also critical for your school to have an emergency protocol in place for recognizing and treating any allergic reactions in students with latex allergies.

A list of items with latex and examples of latex-safe alternatives/barriers can be found on the the Spina Bifida Association of America (SBAA) website at http://www.sbaa.org/html/sbaa_latex.html.

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