AAP issues new guidance for head lice in schools

AAP officials said while head lice is unpleasant, it should not be a reason for a child to miss school
Published: Sep. 30, 2022 at 7:45 PM CDT
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - For the first time since 2015, the American Academy of Pediatrics has updated guidance on diagnosing and treating head lice and control measures that need to be taken in schools.

The new clinical report issued by AAP on head lice outlines new medications for treatment and provides options for managing affected patients.

One of the main issues the report outlines is school screening programs. APA said that these screening programs only stigmatize children suspected of having head lice and are not cost-effective or helpful in the case of head lice in schools.

“Head lice are an unpleasant part of the human experience, but they can be successfully managed and are no reason for a child to miss school,” said Dawn Nolt, MD, MPH, FAAP, lead author of the report written by the AAP Committee on Infectious Diseases, Committee on Practice and Ambulatory Medicine, and Section on Dermatology. “The AAP encourages pediatricians to serve as an educational resource for families, school districts and communities so that head lice may be treated and managed without stigma.”

AAP added that schools should consider offering educational programs for families to help increase understanding and management of head lice in the community.

For more information and resource options for parents, click here.