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Bill that protects bus drivers/crossing guards who admininister epi-pens to students heads to Governor desk

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HARRISBURG, Pa. – A bill that would help to ensure the health and safety of Pennsylvania school students who suffer from severe allergic reactions, was passed unanimously by the Senate today. House Bill 224 now heads to Governor Tom Wolf for his consideration and possible enactment.

The bill sponsored by Rep. Justin Simmons (R-Lehigh/Montgomery/NorthamptonSimmons’ legislation would amend the Public School Code to provide civil immunity to school bus drivers and crossing guards who administer an epinephrine auto-injector, or epi-pen, to a student who experiences an allergic reaction.

Senator Pat Browne (R-Lehigh) was the prime sponsor of companion legislation in the Senate.

Under the legislation, a bus driver or crossing guard must first complete a training program developed by the state Department of Health and comply with school district policy to be qualified to use the epi-pen. House Bill 224 does not mandate that school districts or school bus companies enact an epi-pen policy, only that such a policy would allow for civil immunity if the guidelines are met.

Similar legislation sponsored by Simmons was passed by the House during the last two legislative sessions, but did not come up for a vote in the Senate.