A kindergarten in Xian, Shaanxi province has been closed down after parents said the school had been administrating cold medicine to its students over two years and that it was making the children sick.
Xinhua reports that Fengyun Lanwan Kindergarten’s legal representative, principal and kindergarten doctor are now in custody, according to confirmation from Xi’an government authorities.
Investigations were launched after a parent on Sunday said in a microblog post that the kindergarten had long been giving kids the prescription medicine moroxydine ABOB, and that the drug had been administered without notifying parents.
Parents on Tuesday gathered in protest outside of the kindergarten demanding explanations, while some told Xinhua that their kids were experiencing negative symptoms from the medicine including dizziness, leg pain and stomachaches.
They said that the kindergarten administered the drug to ensure the children’s attendance, as nursery fees were charged based on the number of days attended.
Parents were anxious to know how large a dose children were given and for how long, as well as the possible harmful side effects and need for follow-up physical examinations.
“Even starting when she was in the lowest class years earlier, teachers started giving them the medicine two or three times weekly with a tablet each morning and evening,” said a mother surnamed Wang, who has a five-year-old daughter in the upper class of the kindergarten.
Xinmin Weekly magazine reported that the school’s principal, Zhao Baoying, said the tablets were bought from pharmacies, although Xi’an officials revealed a recent purchase of 10,000 tablets from a local drug wholesaler.
Following preliminary investigation, government authorities have confirmed that the kindergarten was giving kids prescription meds that could cause aforementioned negative side effects, although the investigative team said that the amount of drugs administered did not exceed specified dosages and was unlikely to cause long-term harmful effects.
As the medicine has been submitted for further testing, the government is offering free physical examinations for the kids experiencing symptoms.
[Image Credit: TheGiantVermin]