Supplier says EpiPen Jr crisis will continue, ASCIA issues ECEC recommendations
The Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA) has been notified by Mylan Australia that EpiPen® Jr will not be available in Australia from 5 December 2019, with new stock not expected to arrive in the country from the United States until 17 December 2019, or shortly thereafter.
As a result of the well publicised shortages, ASCIA has issued a recommendation that all remaining stock in pharmacies should be provided to newly diagnosed infants and children weighing 7.5-20kg, and those who have used their EpiPen® Jr and have no other dose available.
Given the recommendation issued by ASCIA, coupled with the shortages, it is likely that those children who have existing EpiPen® Jr available EVEN IF EXPIRED will be refused an updated device, with preferences being shown to those meeting the criteria above.
As a result, schools and early childhood education and care (ECEC) services around the country have been requested by ASCIA to take into account the current supply issues, and not request additional EpiPen® Jr devices to be brought to the school or ECEC centre for each child at risk of anaphylaxis, and to limit the replacement of general use devices which may have expired at this time.
Where there is no alternative available ASCIA advises schools and ECEC that it may be necessary to accept recently expired EpiPen autoinjectors during nation-wide shortages. ASCIA also suggested that rather than a device being stored onsite, parents should be able to bring EpiPen® Jr devices to and from school each day with the child.
More information is available on the ASCIA website here.