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New online food allergy and anaphylaxis course for schools introduced at NASN 2011

Educators and school nurses across the U.S. will soon have access to an interactive online course at www.allergyready.com designed to provide a comprehensive tutorial on managing food allergies and anaphylaxis in schools. The program is being introduced tomorrow by Christine Szychlinski, APN, CPNP of Children’s Memorial Hospital in Chicago at the annual conference of the National Association of School Nurses in Washington, DC.

How to C.A.R.E.™ for Students with Food Allergies: What Educators Should Know is the result of a collaborative effort (see Expert Team), and has been proven effective by research that shows that school personnel demonstrate dramatic improvements in knowledge and skills after doing the online course. The Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) and the Food Allergy Initiative (FAI) led the effort to improve food allergy education for teachers across the country.

The online course, which will be offered in both free and subscriber versions in August 2011, will support schools in their efforts to comply with the recent Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Management Act (FAAMA).

The course provides interactive education for school staff and emphasizes the need to create an allergy-smart school environment for students with food allergies. It helps educators comprehend the basic facts about food allergy, symptoms of a reaction, and effective treatment for reactions.

The elearning format enables any place, any time, self-paced education over the Internet that can be delivered across the country efficiently and effectively. It uses best practices in graphics, interactivity and multimedia learning, as well as the latest evidence related to food allergy and anaphylaxis management and prevention.

It has been proven effective in research supported by AllerGen NCE Inc. and McMaster University. The course was originally developed by Anaphylaxis Canada, the Canadian Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, and Leap Learning Technologies Inc.

“How to C.A.R.E.™ for Students with Food Allergies is an essential tool for school nurses, teachers, and other school staff, who take care of our children,” said FAAN CEO Maria Acebal. “The knowledge that they gain from taking this course online could save a student’s life.”

“School staff can use the online course with confidence, because it is based on best practices developed by food allergy experts, educators, and patient advocates across America,” said Mary Jane Marchisotto, Executive Director, FAI. “Not only does it provide comprehensive education, but the interactive elements make it engaging and fun to use.”

Related links:
Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN): www.foodallergy.org
Food Allergy Initiative (FAI): www.faiusa.org
Anaphylaxis Canada: www.anaphylaxis.ca
Canadian Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: www.csaci.ca
Leap Learning Technologies Inc.: www.leaplearning.ca
AllerGen NCE Inc.: www.allergen-nce.ca
McMaster University: fhs.mcmaster.ca

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About Dr. Anthony Levinson

Dr Anthony J Levinson, MD, FRCPC, MSc, MA Director, Division of eLearning Innovation John R Evans Chair in Health Sciences Educational Research and Instructional Design Associate Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences, McMaster Univerity Vice-President and Chief Learning Officer, Leap Learning Technologies Inc

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