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article imageGirl, 7, dies from deadly reaction to peanut allergy

By Todd Smith     Jan 11, 2012 in Health
Chesterfield - Young Ammaria Johnson, 7, died from a deadly allergic reaction after she was given a peanut by a fellow classmate who was unaware of her condition.
Food allergies are a growing concern among mothers of young children, and recent news from Chesterfield County elementary school sheds some light on the growing phenomenon.
For Ammaria Johnson, her school is now being questioned as it is unclear if they did everything they could to save the little girl. In an ABC news article, experts state that Johnson could have been saved if someone had administered an EpiPen.
Even though it may have saved Ammaria's life, Chesterfield school policy dictates that all medicine must be provided by the parents.
According to Shawn Smith, a spokesman for the school, even if they had an EpiPen they would not be able to use it on Ammaria if it hadn't been provided by her parents and been prescribed for her specifically as described by law.
According to another ABC news article, citing Maria Acebal, chief executive officer of Fairbanks, VA, "all lawsuits come about because school officials don't give it (epinephrine) when it's needed."
Ammaria was escorted to the school clinic after showing signs of hives and shortness of breath. By the time officials arrived it is reported by ABC news that the young girl was already in cardiac arrest.
Laura Pendleton, Johnson's mother, arrived at the hospital shortly after as she had not answered her calls immediately. By the time Johnson was rushed to the hospital she had already been pronounced dead.
This is raising concerns regarding school policy when dealing with prescribed medication procedures, especially when breaking procedure could possibly save a life. Pendleton is expressing her own grievances while also lashing out at the school for not doing all that it could to save her daughter's life. According to ABC Pendleton told local reporters that her daughter did have a plan, but when she offered the school refused to take her EpiPen as well as declined to give her daughter Benadryl - a medication that would also delay an allergic reaction.
More on allergic reactions in children: Anish Girdhar - Research: Mother's diet affects baby's allergies
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