A top Melbourne private school has been blamed for the peanut allergy death of a 13 year old student under their care.
In the five years following this event, I believe many schools in Victoria have increased their vigilance and approach to managing food allergies in school, however there is still a general lack of awareness and attitude that seems to permeate society in general.
What do you think about your school’s approach to allergies?
Ever wondered if food allergies ran in families. I do.
I don’t have any food allergies – although I am allergic to various penicillins – and Pete is not allergic to any food – although he does react terribly to anti-persperants.
Today I received word that my niece was rushed off to hospital after a nasty reaction to peanuts. She had shown sensitivity to say and milk when younger, and my sister-in-law vigalently avoided those products for a few years.
This was her first major reaction at 5!
Genetics or environment? It’s not conclusive – but it would seem the family link is strong.
Isabella has outgrown her dairy allergy, and can tolerate a small amount of egg, but she still LOVES these pancakes….. however we now use milk in place of water.
- 1 cup Plain Flour
- 1/2 teaspoon B-Carb Soda (Baking Soda)
- 2 teaspoons Baking Powder
- 1/4 teaspoon Salt
- 2 Tablespoons Sugar
- 1 cup Milk (or water or soy milk for those with dairy allergy)
- 1.5 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
- 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Essence
Sift flour and baking soda/powder and salt.
Add sugar. (Whisk these together is you don’t have a sifter.)
Add Vanilla and Oil and half the soy milk. Whisk together.
Gradually add the rest of the milk until thick pouring consistency.
Heat Frying pan – needs to be reasonably hot. We now use butter – but you could use spray. Oil/spray for each pancake – they do stick otherwise. I found with this recipe the pancakes worked best if they were on the small side. If the were too big they were difficult to turn.
Can be eaten hot or cold. Our favorite toppings are Maple Syrup; lemon and sugar; and butter (milk free) and jam on the cold ones.
In the news today – information about the inquest into Nathan Francis’ death whilst under the care of his school. See the article HERE.
In the past I found some people think parents of children with allergies over-react…. I can’t even begin to imagine how Nathan’s parents feel, having entrusted the safety of their son to others, only to be let down in the most unimaginable way. But it makes me recall instances where people scoffed at our approach to managing Isabella’s allergies.
I hope the inquest helps Nathan’s family achieve some closure.
I send a prayer to Nathan and his family, and to other families of children with food allergies. And I live in the hope that allergy awareness has increased to the level that health professionals; education and community organisations are educated and prepared to extend the same level of attention in managing allergies as is provided in the family home.
To all the kids (and adults) out there with allergies – may your challenge be treated seriously by your teachers; your friends; your community; and your restaurateurs, so you can live your life to your full potential, without fear.
Another account of lack of vigilence leading to the death of a food allergy sufferer.
A 13 year old school boy attending cadet camp was given army rations containing peanuts (satay for goodness sake!!) After CPR and 4 Epi-pens, he was pronounced dead on arrival at the Royal Childrens Hospital. Full story here.
And people think we are over-protective when we closely manage our children’s food.