Child Food Allergies

Food Allergies

Who is affected?

  • Chapter 744 School Age and Before and After School Programs
  • Chapter 746 Child Care Centers
  • Chapter 747 Registered and Licensed Child Care Homes

 

Overview

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that 4 in 100 children have a food allergy. As the prevalence of children who have food allergies increases, so have the number of hospitalizations.

Food allergy is a potentially serious immune response to eating specific foods or food additives. Eight types of food account for over 90% of allergic reactions in affected individuals: milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, soy, and wheat. Reactions to these foods by an allergic person can range from a tingling sensation around the mouth and lips and hives to death, depending on the severity of the allergy.

Here, we will focus on the rules put in place to prevent food allergy related health complications for children in Texas child care.

Summary of Changes

What is a food allergy emergency plan?

L. 744.2667

- identifies food allergy emergency plan as an individualized plan prepared by the child's health care professional

- plan must include a list of each food the child is allergic to, possible symptoms if exposed to food on the list and the steps to take if the child has an allergic reaction

S. 746.3817

R. 747.3617

When is this plan required?

L. 744.2669

- specifies plan required for each child with a diagnosed food allergy

- plan must be signed and dated by the child's health care professional and parent

- a copy of the plan must be kept in the child's file

S. 746.3819

R. 747.3619

Basic requirements for meals and snacks

J. 744.2401(h)

- adds requirement that operation must not serve a child a food listed on the child's food allergy emergency plan

Q. 746.3301(h)

Q. 747.3101(h)

Field trip requirements

I. 744.2301(5)

- adds requirement to have a copy of a child's food allergy emergency plan and allergy medications, if applicable

N. 746.3001(5)

N. 747.2901(5)

Child admission information

C. 744.605(16)

- adds requirement to obtain a complete food allergy emergency plan, if applicable, before admission

C. 746.605(16)

C. 747.605(16)

Required postings

B. 744.401(8)

B. 744.403(b)

- adds requirement to post a list of each child's food allergies that require an emergency plan

- adds requirement for list of each child's food allergies that require an emergency plan be posted during all hours of operation where food is prepared and in each room where the child may spend time; the posting must be placed in a location where caregivers may easily view the list, and if a parent requests it, maintain the child's privacy; caregivers and employees who prepare or serve food must be aware of each child's food allergies

B. 746.401(10)

B. 746.403(b)

B. 747.401(b)

- adds requirement to post each child's food allergy emergency plan in a prominent place during operation hours, and if requested by parent, maintain child's privacy

- adds requirement to ensure caregivers and employees who prepare or serve food be aware of each child's food allergies