July 18, 2018
Hagåtña – Governor Eddie Baza Calvo officially signed the “Student Health Services Act” introduced by Senator Mary Torres today.
“I want to thank Senator Torres for introducing this important bill. Some of our children deal with medical challenges on a daily basis and this bill has found a way for us to better support them. Today, we give parents across the island, some peace of mind knowing that there is a plan in place to allow their children to receive, or provide for themselves, medication at the time that they need it,” said Governor Eddie Baza Calvo.
Bill 224-34 gives parents the option to choose to have the school nurse train school personnel to tend to specific situations that arise where the child needs life-saving medication or attention that is required within minutes.
“Many children on Guam have similar circumstances where they’re trying to manage conditions, and we wanted to help in any way with these children, particularly in our school system. This was an effort between the Young family and my office to find a solution to make it better and a lot easier for people to get along in their every day lives. I got to work with a very special family who inspired me,” said Senator Mary Torres.
The bill also allows students, with prior authorization from their physician and parents, to carry and self-administer their medications as needed. This is especially beneficial for students whose timely administration of medication can be critical to their care — like severe allergies or diabetes.
Evie Young, the child who inspired the bill, thanked the senators and the governor for their support saying there are other families in a similar situation for whom this new law would make a difference in their day-to-day quality of life.
“This is where a parent can step in and make it that much better for the community. That’s what it takes, a village, and we are many villages with big hearts. This will help not just students and families, it will help people live their lives breathing easier (because) they can go to work knowing that they don’t have to worry so much,” said Evie Young.
“Student safety is the top concern for both parents and school officials. This law provides a safeguard that allows us to better address the health needs of our students while they are in our care throughout the school day,” said Guam Department of Education Acting Superintendent Erika Cruz.
Bill 224 is now Public Law 34-114.