How to have Effective Individualized Health Care

An Individualized Health Care Plan (IHP) is a written document designed to meet the specific health care needs of the student within the school environment. This document should be developed by the parents, student, school nurse and other team members who play a role in the child’s school day. An IHP should be attached to the student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP), Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP), Section 504 Plan or be a separate document.

Students with special health care needs may require specialized health care during the school day.

Eligible students may:

  • require administration and/or monitoring of medication;
  • have a stable health condition but may require routine monitoring or crisis care;
  • use a particular device which compensates for the loss of vital bodily functions;
  • require substantial and complex or frequent health care procedures to avert disability or death.

(From “Servicing Students with Special Health Care Needs”)

The benefits of having a well-developed IHP are numerous. Students who have effective IHPs have better attendance, improved alertness, increased physical stamina, fewer medical symptoms, increased ability to participate in school activities, and have fewer medical emergencies.

IHP Team Members

  • Parent/Guardian
  • Student
  • School Nurse
  • Other School Staff
  • Student’s Health Care Provider (if possible)

Parent’s Role

  • Notify the school about your child’s health needs
  • Provide written medical documentation
  • Participate as part of the IHP team
  • Provide medication and supplies, as needed
  • Provide contact information for emergencies
  • Educate your child to develop self-care skills
  • Promote good health, personal care, nutrition, and physical activity

Student’s Role

  • Participate in IHP team meeting
  • Inform school staff when he or she is experiencing a change in health condition

School Nurse’s Role

  • Be responsible for the development of the IHP
  • Participate as an IHP team member
  • Get parental permission to exchange information with the student’s physician(s)
  • Manage the IHP activities
  • Ensure IHP implementation
  • Complete and maintain all documentation
  • Train pertinent staff on content of the IHP

Other School Staff’s Role

  • Participate as an IHP team member
  • Assist in the development of the IHP
  • Receive necessary training
  • Help with the implementation and evaluation of the IHP
  • Make special environmental alterations and store needed supplies

Physician’s Role

  • Serve as an IHP team member (if possible)
  • Provide information to the team about the student’s health care needs
  • Assist in determining if special training is needed for school staff
  • Regulations from the Kansas State Board of Nursing require a nursing care plan (IHP), if procedures are provided at school.