Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Meth protocol in Southern IL

From The Southern Illinoisan:

Already one of the first hospitals in the area to begin tracking meth-related cases that come there, Herrin Hospital's administrators and SIH are formulating a protocol for law enforcement, emergency responders and medical care professionals to follow when children are involved in a meth lab bust.

The protocol requires all children found at a meth lab to be assessed by a medical professional within two hours of being removed from the lab.

The assessment is to determine if the children are suffering ill effects from exposure to meth manufacture and use. In some cases, the protocol recommends a serum drug screen in addition to urine tests for drugs. Children in homes where meth is manufactured often test positive for meth and other drugs. The serum test helps determine the level of exposure.

The protocol also calls for follow-up treatment with special attention to developmental screening, neurological screening and tests of the respiratory system and kidney function. Follow-up is mandated at 30 days and 12 months for children who have been declared at risk.


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