Student health support

Student health support is implemented within a framework provided by the Work Health and Safety Act, 2011 and the Common Law.

The department has a duty to ensure the safety of staff and students.

The Work Health and Safety Act also provides that an employee must, while at work, take reasonable care for the health and safety of people who are at the employee's place of work or who may be affected by the employee's acts or omissions at work.

As a minimum, this means that any staff member must, if necessary, assist in an emergency.

Where a student has been diagnosed with a condition that may require an emergency response, the Principal will coordinate the development of an emergency care/response plan as part of the Individual Health Support Plan for the student.

male student with asthma inhaler participating in sport

All staff employed in School Administrative Manager, School Administrative Officer, School Learning Support Officer and Aboriginal Education Officer classifications are required to perform duties and complete relevant training requirements associated with the provision of first aid and administration of medications, as directed by the principal.

Anaphylaxis training and e-Emergency Care are mandatory for all permanent, temporary and casual school-based staff.

In an emergency, a staff member administers medication or health support to a student in accordance with his or her training and agreements documented in the emergency care section of the student's individual health support plan.

Legal liability

Should a student be injured or made ill as a result of the administration of medication or health support by a member of staff, the staff member is protected by the legal principle of vicarious liability in relation to personal injury proceedings.

This means that unless the staff member has deliberately injured the student, or behaved with reckless disregard for the student's safety, the department will be liable for any injury caused by the negligence of the staff member.

Role of schools

  • assist students who have health support needs at school
  • have systems in place to collect health information about students at enrolment and on a regular basis
  • collect and record the immunisation status of students at enrolment
  • have systems in place to protect the health and safety of all students when they are at school or involved in school activities
  • develop an individual health support plan for any student:
    • diagnosed with severe asthma, type 1 diabetes, epilepsy or anaphylaxis and/or
    • diagnosed with a condition that may require an emergency response
    • who requires the administration of health support procedures
  • collaboratively review individual health support plans at least annually
  • where requested, assist with the administration of medication for a student when a medical practitioner has prescribed medication that must be administered during the school day
  • provide temporary care when a student becomes unwell at school, which may include the provision of first aid (including emergency care)
  • report cases of vaccine preventable diseases, as listed on the NSW Health website, to the local public health unit
  • ensure the school does not use peanuts, tree nuts or any nut products in curriculum or extracurricular activities. This does not include food labelled as may contain traces of nuts.

Further information


  • Health and safety
  • Student management and wellbeing

Business Unit:

  • Inclusion and Wellbeing
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