Epipens, Jext, Emerade adrenaline auto-injector 2019

Hello, I’m Emma Hammett from First Aid for Life
and onlinefirstaid.com. Today I’m going to talk
to you about EpiPens. JEXT, Emerades and adrenaline
autoinjectors in general, particularly in the light
of the recent rationing that’s happening and the extreme shortages of these life-saving devices that we are experiencing. So five to 8% of children have food allergies and 1/5 of all fatal
reactions occur at school, which is pretty frightening, so that’s just focusing
on the school children. There’s an awful lot of other people that carry adrenaline autoinjectors because they are frightened and at risk of a life-threatening
allergic reaction. So it’s really vital that all these people
have immediate access to their adrenaline autoinjectors and they need to have two of
them with them at all times. And there’s various
reasons for needing two. One of the most important is that sometimes the device itself fails and there’s been recent
problems with Emerade that have now been sorted and the batches were recalled that had this issue where they weren’t firing properly, so that’s now resolved but it did highlight an
issue that can occur. There’s also situations for a great number of people who suffer from anaphylaxis where the first adrenaline autoinjector will not be sufficient and they will need a second dose in order to give them enough adrenaline to reduce the signs and symptoms that they’re experiencing and the life-threatening symptoms of an anaphylactic reaction and you can give your second adrenaline autoinjector five minutes after the first. So really important that everyone who has these is carrying
two with them at all times. And it’s really important too that you give adrenaline first to somebody with a known food allergy who has sudden onset
breathing difficulties and you think that they could be having an allergic reaction, so don’t fuss with anything else, if they have an adrenaline autoinjector, the advice is to give that straightaway. The sooner you can give this, the better the body’s response. So if they’re having a
non-life-threatening reaction, just a local reaction, then antihistamine will work but it can take about 15 minutes to react and to begin to take down some of the signs and symptoms and you haven’t got that much time if it’s a serious anaphylactic reaction. So if they are having a systemic reaction, or if they’re having breathing problems or swelling that is causing constriction and they are having the signs and symptoms of an anaphylactic reaction, so they may have hives, it’s a systemic body reaction. They may collapse. Then you need to give
adrenaline straightaway. Positioning’s important too, so if they are having breathing problems, don’t lie them down ’cause it’ll make it
harder for them to breathe, so get them onto the floor and have them sitting up a little bit. Whereas if they’re not
having breathing problems, lying them down and raising their legs is the best way whilst you’re waiting for
the emergency services and you are always calling
the emergency services as soon as you’ve given the
adrenaline autoinjector. So there are serious
supply issues at the moment and the Anaphylaxis Campaign have issued the following advice. So if you have an adrenaline autoinjector, ensure you know how to use it. Frightening as it seems, there’s an awful lot of
people carrying these around for themselves or their children or who do not know how to
use this in an emergency. It’s really easy to use. They say that you should
know how to use it and you should train others, train your friends and your family so they are competent using it too. You can get a trainer device free from the websites of whichever
one of these you are using. So you can contact them,
get a trainer device and that enables you to try it and learn and feel what it’s like. You hold it in the dominant hand, you take off the cap with the other hand and then you put it in
the upper outer part of the thigh, you push it in hard and then you wait. Depending on the device, you may need to hold it for 10 seconds or otherwise it’s just two seconds and then you remove it. So hold it in your dominant hand, use the other hand, take off the cap and put it straight into
the upper outer part of your thigh. Okay? So, the supply issues are causing serious problems. So we hope that everyone’s got
two adrenaline autoinjectors at all times and that is the advice from
the Anaphylaxis Campaign. They say always carry two pens. They say register the expiry date so that you have ample warning when it’s about to expire, so you can get a prescription in good time and it’s really important that you get your new replacement before you get rid of your old one because there may be a delay. So that is some really good serious advice to keep you safe. Now some of the adrenaline
autoinjector companies have also given the advice
for specific autoinjectors that you can extend the expiry date. So they were for some specific ones saying actually you know what? You can use this three months
beyond its expiry date. So again, that information can be found on their websites as to whether they still
have the supply issues and that’s the problem and that’s what they’re recommending. As it is today, they still have the supply issue problems and in addition, the Central Pharmacy Regulators have advised all pharmacies that they’re operating special measures around adrenaline autoinjectors. So even if your GP has prescribed two
adrenaline autoinjectors for your child to have at home, two for them to have at school, two for them to have at
granny and granddad’s, then your pharmacy may not be allowed to give out all those autoinjectors, they may only be able give two. They are not allowed to
prescribe beyond that because of imposed rationing
because of the acute shortage to make sure that everyone has everything that they need and this causes real problems to schools ’cause schools would like every child to have two at school and obviously logistically getting them to take them home and have them with them is a problem. So it will interesting how the different schools
are going to react to this and what is going to happen but at the moment, there
is still an acute shortage of adrenaline autoinjectors and as of today or as of July, there has been a degree
of rationing in place because the stocks are so low and so that is something to be aware of. Schools are allowed an
emergency autoinjector, so they can buy those to have as backup. They are not to replace the
child’s own autoinjector. That every child should have
adrenaline autoinjectors that are in date with them in school. The other thing that’s important when you are looking to
give the autoinjector, particularly if you’re using
it beyond the expiry date is that adrenaline will deteriorate beyond the expiry date and so, it’s really important that you look in that little window and ensure that the liquid is clear and please don’t use it
dramatically beyond the expiry date because it’s unlikely to
be as potent as you need. So make sure you are looking in advance. You are very aware of these shortages and that you are doing your absolute best to get a prescription in very good time, so if the pharmacy has a long lead time in getting that in to stock, that you’re not going
to be left high and dry without an autoinjector when you need it. That’s Emma Hammett from First Aid for Life
and onlinefirstaid.com. It’s a complicated issue. I hope that was helpful. Thank you for listening.

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