Your child isn’t alone. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, 5.6 million children in the United States have food allergies.
Currently, there is no known cure for food allergies. However, there are effective ways to prevent food allergy injuries and deaths. When your child’s daycare provider fails to take certain precautions to prevent an allergic reaction or respond to a food allergy emergency, they may be found negligent.
How Daycare Neglect Can Cause Food Allergy Injuries
Daycare providers have a duty to provide reasonable care for every child in attendance. This duty of care includes taking steps to avoid allergic reactions and responding promptly to allergic reactions when they occur.
Specifically, a daycare can prevent dangerous and deadly food allergy reactions by:
- Getting a detailed list of food allergies for each child. The first step in preventing a food allergy reaction is knowing what foods to avoid. The most common food allergies among children include peanuts, tree nuts, eggs, milk, wheat, soy, fish, and shellfish. However, other allergies are also possible, and not every child is allergic to every food. Therefore, the daycare should request a list of known allergens for each child.
- Taking steps to avoid known allergies and not providing new foods without a parent’s permission. Once the daycare knows about an allergy, staff members should have procedures in place to prevent the child from eating or coming in contact with the allergen. Additionally, there may be allergens that are not yet known if the child has not yet eaten a variety of food. Accordingly, it is important that no new foods be provided without a parent’s permission.
- Recognizing signs of an allergic reaction. Daycare staff should receive thorough training so they can take the appropriate actions if a child has an allergic reaction. Symptoms may include trouble breathing, skin rashes, gastrointestinal problems, and signs of anaphylactic shock.
- Taking action when an allergic reaction occurs. Staff members should know how and when to administer an EpiPen, when other medication should be given, when to call 911, when to call parents, and how to administer CPR.
If the daycare failed to do any of these things, your child may have been hurt or killed by daycare negligence.
Critical Evidence in a Food Allergy Daycare Neglect Case
The daycare may argue that it didn’t cause your child’s food allergy, and that may be true. However, a daycare can be held accountable if its negligence caused your child to be hurt. You will need to know what happened right before your child came into contact with the food and during your child’s allergic reaction to know if the daycare was at fault.
You can find out what happened to your child by getting:
- Video footage, if it exists
- Feeding records, if they exist
- Staff records to determine who was working and what the staff/child ratio was at the time your child was hurt
- Detailed statements from daycare staff members
- Training records for daycare staff members
- Written daycare policies and procedures
Together, this and other evidence may show whether or not the daycare caused your child’s injury or death.
Children With Food Allergies Have Rights That Need Protecting
You trusted your child to the care of the daycare facility. If the daycare’s negligence allowed your child to come into contact with an allergen or if the daycare failed to act appropriately when your child had an allergic reaction, then your child may have been seriously hurt or killed.
Your child deserves a fair recovery for the significant pain and suffering caused by daycare negligence, and your family shouldn’t have to pay for medical bills or bear the burden of your lost income as you care for your child.
Instead, call our experienced daycare neglect and injury lawyers today. We want to help your family make a fair and full recovery for your child’s injury that never should have happened.