January 5th, 2012
10:55 AM ET

Allergy kills Virginia girl at school

By Matt Smith and Trisha Henry, CNN
(CNN) - The death of a 7-year-old Virginia girl from a suspected peanut allergy at school has raised questions about how prepared school officials are to handle sudden reactions in children.

First-grader Ammaria Johnson died Monday after breaking out in hives and complaining of shortness of breath at recess. School authorities called paramedics after she was taken to the nurse's office, said Lt. Jason Elmore, a spokesman for the Chesterfield County Fire Department in suburban Richmond.

"From what we understand, she possibly had gotten something outside," Elmore said. The clinic had no medication to give her and called 911, he said.

"It's very straightforward. There is no magic to this," said Maria Acebal, the head of the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network. "It's just proper education, how to recognize it, and how to treat it."

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soundoff (3 Responses)
  1. mom of kid with life threatening allergies

    I'm so sorry for the mother's loss. Ammaria is a beautiful girl.

    Other articles state that the mother had filed an Emergency Plan and had medication at school. It appears that the medication was not given. I don't know the accuracy of this. But the investigationwill tell if the school procedures had cracks in them. Additionally, we need to talk about whether current practices are enough....as a nation...in local schools. Allergies are on the rise. My kid is diagnosed. Some are not. Amarria was diagnosed.

    My daughter has life threatening allergies and the school is informed. It is still hard for me to let go and trust the process.

    January 13, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
  2. max

    dont know much about allergies but arent epi pens and benadryl fairly easy to find?

    we dont need legislation to solve this. how about if your child has allergies leave an epi with the school nurse along with a letter authorizing its use?

    January 9, 2012 at 11:15 am |
  3. momof7yo

    Sorry for the loss of such a beautiful young girl:(

    January 6, 2012 at 12:19 pm |