Schools work to prevent allergic food reactions

GREENWOOD, Ind. (AP) — Indiana schools are changing their policies on birthdays and other celebrations in response to rising numbers of students with food allergies.

Some districts bar parents from sending in treats. Others are more closely scrutinizing food items for possible allergens or requiring that any goods brought in are prepackaged and contain a list of ingredients.

The moves come amid new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on how schools should handle food allergy issues.

Voluntary guidelines released Wednesday by the CDC urge schools to restrict nuts, shellfish or other foods that can cause allergic reactions and ensure that emergency allergy medicine — like EpiPens — is available.

Universities including Purdue, IU and Ball State also have made changes to help students with serious food allergies.

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