Calif. bill to provide emergency allergy care for students deserves support

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Anaphylaxis is a severe allergic reaction triggered by a variety of things, from getting stung by a bee to eating just one nut. It comes on quickly and can kill a person in a few minutes.

Kids are at special risk, as many have unrecognized allergies. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that as many as 6% of all children have a food allergy. Thanks to technology, however, we have medicines and medicine-delivery systems, such as epinephrine auto-injectors, that can counter anaphylaxis in just as immediate a fashion.

State law allows children with diagnosed allergies to keep their prescribed epinephrine auto-injectors, commonly known under the brand name EpiPen, at school in case of a reaction. It's a good law but leaves out all the children who have no idea whether they have severe allergies.

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