Scouts-L Mail Archive for August of 1999: Re: Medical information missing
Re: Medical information missing
Fri, 27 Aug 1999 09:00:03 -0400
Pam and fellow Scouters,
<I'm sorry Carol, but with the experiences I have in working with AD/HD
<kids, I do not feel that your option of sending this Scout to a Special
<Needs Troop would be in HIS best interests. It might be some adult
<leader's best interests however!
You're right, it's in the adult leaders' best interests (all 5 of us) to
stop working with this boy and begin working with the rest of the troop. He
alone takes up most of our attention even when he's on medication. And it's
in the troops best interests that we be able to start giving more attention
to the other Scouts.
<I have been re-reading back over your posts. You began by saying that
<your troop had spent a week at a remote camp and that "one of your
<AD/HD Scouts had been acting terribly unusual. He had made life
<miserable, having paranoid accidents and threatening suicide. His med.
<form indicated a change in meds. Contact could not be made with the
<father. It was discovered that he was on a medication vacation
<finally." Now today's post says that your "troop has dealt with this
<Scout for years! Nobody seemed to realize the medical danger in
<which this boy was placed. I thought maybe I'd been over-reacting but
<y'all have confirmed my intuitive feeling that this was an emergency
<Now, I may be reading this situation all wrong, but what I am reading
<here is one person is upset. Not the whole adult leadership, but one
<person. This is not a new situation, but this boy has been in the
<troop "for years". I would think that if it were a true problem, it
<would have been dealt with years ago!
No, what I said was that no one else realizes the MEDICAL danger in which
this boy was placed. The entire troop, adults and Scouts, are upset and
concerned over the dangers he presented on this trip. My post also states
that "Upon arriving home we discovered that the medical form was incorrect,
the Scout was on a 'medication vacation' and was not on any prescribed
medication at all." Don't read things into my posts that are not there.
Upon arrival home, the SM had a lengthy discussion with the father, which is
how we found out that he'd been thrown out of the 2 previous camps and was
off medications for the summer. We have dealt with him and his parents for
years, but our solutions are no longer effective for him, especially since
his mother denies that he has any problems other than AD/HD and chooses to
remain invisible and inaccessible, and his father rarely goes on campouts
with us even though we've requested his presence several times. You ARE
reading this situation all wrong.
<I do NOT think, given the information that you've provided, that this
<Scout was in medical danger. Granted that the situation was not good.
<Granted that the health form should have been more complete. I wonder
<why (if this is a long term problem) the SM didn't question the parents
<more closely. I think that the troop adult leadership has to bear SOME
<responsibility for the situation. Especially if they knew before hand
<that they were dealing with a Scout that had AD/HD.
The SM went over the medical forms the week before we left--the father gave
no indication that the form was incorrect even though the Scout had been off
his meds since school ended in June. What responsibility would you have us
bear for this? Your own pamphlet states "Ask if he is on a medication
vacation. This is NOT the best time for such an adjustment!" This Scout
was on a medication vacation and the SM was not given that information when
he went over the medical form with the father. In addition, the father did
not return any of the SM phone calls from camp asking for information. What
would you have us do--call each and every boy's physician before we leave to
see if the parents are telling the truth about the accuracy of the medical
<I am getting the feeling here, that there is something else going on,
<that we are not being made aware of.
Your first sentence here borders on an accusation of discrimination on the
part of the adults, and I take offense at that. We have worked with this
boy, his parents and his doctor since Cub Scouts. He is now larger
physically than most of us, when he is on his regular medication schedule he
exhibits defiance towards both adults and Scouts regularly, and his father
either won't come to campouts or allows us to deal with the Scout on
campouts because he says HE can't handle the young man. What do you want US
to do if the father professes a lack of control over the boy?
<I would like to know what
constituted those, in your opinion, paranoid accidents?
My exact wording was 'paranoid incidents', not 'accidents'--there IS a
<what circumstances were the suicide threats made and what was
As for specific circumstances concerning the threats of suicide, I do not
think this is the appropriate forum to go into that type of detail. Despite
your thoughts and expressions to the contrary I am concerned for this
Scout's health, welfare and privacy. It will have to be sufficient to
state that the comments he made were specific as to intent and method. The
SM, CC and two SAs were the leaders of this trip, and I think we can
recognize dangerous non-AD/HD behavior. As a matter of fact, the SM is
well-trained in handling both AD/HD and Tourettes Syndrome and this young
man's behavior had him concerned enough to make several emergency calls to
<What was the terribly unusual behavior? If the troop had
<several years of experience with this Scout and his family, why was he
<included on a week long remote camp out?
Because we were assured that he was capable of handling it, and were not
made aware that he was on a medication vacation and had caused trouble at 2
<How was life made miserable
by this Scout?
Living for 8 days with someone who exhibits paranoia, suicidal threats and
violates safety regulations does not make for a carefree environment or a
valuable camp experience for either adults or Scouts. Again, details
irrelevant to my initial question will not be provided in a public forum
< You say "the thinking is that the troop should
<recommend the Special Needs Troop." Who's thinking is that? Yours or
<the whole committee?
All the adults on the trip, plus the 2 ASMs who stayed behind, plus our DE
and our legal advisor. The committee hasn't had a chance to meet because
the CC has been down with bronchitis for 2 weeks. But if the committee
decision is other than the special needs troop, that's what we'll abide by.
<AD/HD kids have extremely low self-esteem. If this young man is
<already depressed and now is forced out of his home troop and told that
<he needs to join a "Special Needs" troop, I can just about guarantee
<that Scouting will lose him. Most teens do NOT like the label of
<Special Needs or Special Education. They want to be just like everyone
<else and fit (blend) in.
<As long as your troop is familiar with him and his needs (which it
<sounds like you are), I would think that it should be possible to
<accomdate him in his home troop! To do otherwise, sounds to me as if
<he is being discriminated against, on the basis of his disAbility!
<This is a sad situation. <shaking my head sadly> If the SM and CC of
<your troop refuse to meet with the parents of this Scout to work out a
<better plan for handling future campouts, I guess that the Scout MAY be
<better off out of your troop. It truly saddens me when an adult will
<take advantage by using a child's disAbility to get rid of them! It
<does NOT create a caring impression. I think we are missing too much
<specific information here to truly give meaningful opinions on how to
<help or whether this was a dangerous situation.
Your conclusions are based on assumptions and your accusation of
discrimination is totally unfounded. As you say, you do not know the entire
situation. My second post specifically mentions that we've tossed around
several other ideas, and that requiring parental supervision in the past has
not worked. AT NO POINT does my post mention refusal to meet with the
parents. Just what IS your basis for this accusation of discrimination?
I realize that you work with and feel compassion for these children, as do
I. I do not like having to make these types of decisions and neither does
our committee. But we have to look at the risks and benefits to the other
boys, too, as we have neither the training nor the manpower to provide the
one-on-one supervision this Scout requires. I came to this forum to ask
advice on a specific aspect of this situation for which I gave the relevant
details, and I have been publicly accused of discrimination against a
disabled youth by a fellow Scouter who I think is over-reacting and seeing
things in my post which weren't there. If you had made these comments in a
live roundtable in my district, you would have astounded our members. We do
not speak to each other in this manner, and I'm surprised to find such a
diatribe on Scouts-L. I believe you owe me an apology, on the list please.
Carol McFadden, ASM T194, Allison Park, PA