On November 3, 2017, 3-year old Elijah Silvera died after having a severe allergic reaction at his preschool facility. Even though the preschool had documentation of Elijah’s life-threatening milk allergy, asthma, and other allergies, the day care fed Elijah a grilled cheese sandwich. Then the facility failed to follow emergency anaphylaxis protocol.
Elijah’s Law, A6971B, is a bill aimed at preventing another tragedy like Elijah's. The New York Assembly and Senate has passed the bill, and it is now waiting to be signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo. The bill would require anaphylaxis policies for child day care centers, including:
- Emergency protocols for allergic reactions
- Communication plans for discussing safe and unsafe foods with children
- Plans to prevent exposure to allergens
According to an article in "Allergic Living" magazine, "This is what Elijah’s Law will address directly: that proper education and training is critical to preventing a devastating failure in care like this from happening again."
Currently, New York State’s requirements for schools to have anaphylaxis policies only apply to K-12 settings.