Phoenix elementary school student hospitalized after taking an edible
PHOENIX - A child was taken to the hospital after taking a THC edible at a Phoenix elementary school, fire crews said Wednesday afternoon.
Firefighters were called to Shaw Butte Elementary School near 21st Avenue and Peoria after two sixth graders took the edibles and reported having "medical issues."
One student was hospitalized in stable condition, and the other went home with their parents.
Officials say the school is looking into the incident.
Just one week earlier, five students in Laveen were treated at the hospital after eating weed gummies.
Statement from Shaw Butte Elementary School
I wanted to inform you about an incident that occurred today. At approximately 11:30 a.m., we became aware of two students in need of medical assistance. Emergency personnel and their parents/guardians were called to the school. Upon evaluation by the Phoenix Fire Department, one student was transported to a local hospital after the student stated having ingesting a substance while the other was released to a guardian. We are currently investigating the incident and disciplinary actions will be taken that are consistent with District policy and Arizona law. Thank you for your support."
Health experts see increase in similar calls since marijuana legalization
According to officials with the Banner Poison Control Center in Phoenix, they are seeing a slow uptick in calls since medical and recreational marijuana were legalized in Arizona.
"We certainly have seen a pretty steady increase in the number of pediatric patients," said Bryan Kuhn with the Banner Poison Control Center. "We probably are aware of at least one case per week."
Kuhn said those cases involve either children four years of age and younger who accidentally consume edible products, or older kids experimenting with the substance.
"We run this spectrum of symptoms of potentially not as harmful, drowsiness or [sleeplessness], all the way to potentially life-threatening respiratory depression or seizures," said Kuhn.
According to a new study from the Journal of Pediatrics, calls to poison centers about kids consuming THC edibles rose over 1,000% from 2017 to 2021. Experts believe marijuana legalization, along with kids spending more time at home during the pandemic, are factors behind the increase,.
"Kids will be curious. They are going to want to experiment. We have to do the best to arm them with the information. Hopefully, they can use to make the best decisions they can," said Kuhn.
In the aftermath of what happened at Shaw Butte Elementary, parents say they were alarmed at what happened.
"Extremely shocked that it happened," said Darryl Rawlings.
"You have to lock it up. Put it away in a safe," said Lee Culliver, a grandmother.
Some say they plan to change conversation they have with their younger children after what happened.
"Gotta stay prepared," said Rawlings.