In Ohio last spring, the stock epinephrine bill passed. I obviously was thrilled, even though we are homeschooling (for now). If we were to send Superman to school, he’d go to the private school where my husband works. I was so disappointed to hear last week that the superintendent of that private school has declined to take advantage of having free epinephrine auto-injectors in the building. “Why?”, I asked my husband. “He doesn’t think they’re necessary…”, my husband told me. Both of us were stunned to think that a person in charge of hundreds of children wouldn’t want life-saving medication on hand in the event of an allergic reaction in an adult or student.
Before I had children, I used to teach in a public school, and I had to demand the list of medical conditions of my students (which I was entitled to) so that I would know what to do in the event of a medical emergency. I KNOW that I would have been interested in a child’s allegric history. I KNOW that I would have wanted undesignated epinephrine in the school, JUST IN CASE. Now that it’s possible, school districts are declining it. Unbelievable.
The Mylan School Access Program has some new offerings that I’m hoping will make it easier and more enticing for school districts to obtain undesignated epinephrine for their campuses. Here’s what it includes:
· Four EpiPen or EpiPen Jr Auto-Injectors: With a qualifying prescription, each calendar year schools can apply online to receive two EpiPen 2-Pak® cartons, two EpiPen Jr 2-Pak® cartons or one 2-Pak of each kind.
· Anaphylaxis: Know It. See It. Treat It. Training Video: The video is available on DVD or for download at EpiPen4Schools.com.
· EpiPen® Trainer: Designed to practice administration technique, the EpiPen Trainer contains no drug product or needle.
· EpiLocker™: A brightly colored unit to store the free EpiPen and/or EpiPen Jr Auto-Injectors received through the program, so they are easily identifiable in the event of an emergency.
· Replenishment Offer: Qualifying schools that use the free supply of EpiPen Auto-Injectors to respond to anaphylaxis may order a replenishment supply at no additional cost.
· Online Order Process: Schools may now submit and track their orders online.
The EpiPen4Schools resources are designed to not only support school access to epinephrine, but also to provide schools with tools to instruct appropriate staff on how to follow an anaphylaxis action plan, which includes avoiding allergens (if known), recognizing the signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis, having access to two epinephrine auto-injectors at all times and seeking immediate emergency medical care if anaphylaxis occurs.
I’m interested to know…has your school district obtained their free epinephrine auto-injectors?
*A school will only receive EpiPen Auto-Injectors in accordance with all applicable laws. The school must submit a valid prescription in order to qualify for this program. There is no requirement for a school to purchase additional EpiPen or EpiPen Jr Auto-Injectors, or any other Mylan Specialty products.
EpiPen® (epinephrine) 0.3 mg and EpiPen Jr® (epinephrine) 0.15 mg Auto-Injectors are for the emergency treatment of life-threatening allergic reactions (anaphylaxis) caused by allergens, exercise, or unknown triggers; and for people who are at increased risk for these reactions. EpiPen and EpiPen Jr are intended for immediate self-administration as emergency supportive therapy only. Seek immediate emergency medical treatment after use.
Important Safety Information
EpiPen Auto-Injectors contain a single dose of epinephrine, which you inject into your outer thigh. DO NOT INJECT INTO YOUR VEIN, BUTTOCK, FINGERS, TOES, HANDS OR FEET. In case of accidental injection, please seek immediate medical treatment. Epinephrine should be used with caution if you have heart disease or are taking certain medicines that can cause heart-related (cardiac) symptoms.
Tell your doctor if you have certain medical conditions such as asthma, depression, thyroid disease, Parkinson’s disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease, have any other medical conditions, are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. Be sure to also tell your doctor all the medicines you take, especially medicines for asthma. If you have certain medical conditions, or take certain medicines, your condition may get worse or you may have longer lasting side effects when you take the EpiPen or EpiPen Jr Auto-Injector.
The most common side effects may include increase in heart rate, stronger or irregular heartbeat, sweating, nausea and vomiting, difficulty breathing, paleness, dizziness, weakness or shakiness, headache, apprehension, nervousness or anxiety. These side effects usually go away quickly, especially if you rest.
Talk to your healthcare professional to see if EpiPen or EpiPen Jr Auto-Injector is right for you.
Please see the full EpiPen.com for Prescribing Information and Patient Information.
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.