Allergy Medication in Schools is Crucial to Save Lives
24
August

By Adem Lewis / in , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , /


As a doctor in an emergency department, Sarah
Denny has treated dozens of children who’ve had severe allergic reactions to food. As a mother, she’s had to to the same when
her son Liam was a toddler he had a sudden and life-threatening reaction to soy. We could hear our ambulance on the way, I
ran out to the curb with Liam in my arms to wait for them, and as I looked down at him,
he was just pale, unconscious and lifeless. Moments before, Denny’s husband injected their
son with on of these: it’s a dose of epinephrine and in these situations, is the only thing
that can save a child’s life. The Denny’s say they’re lucky the incident
happened at home, where they had epinephrine, but that’s not always the case. About 25% of children who have their first
episode of a severe allergic reaction to a food, it occurs inside the school setting. Doctor David Stukus is an allergist at Nationwide
Children’s Hospital, and a strong supporter of the new law that will put more injectors
into our schools. Until now, it was up to parents like Sarah
Denny to take epinephrine injectors to their child’s school. In an emergency, the school
nurse could use them – but only to a child who bought their own. The new law urges schools to keep extra injectors
on hand, for anyone who might need them. Food allergies have increased by about 50%
in the last decade alone. Currently, approximately 2 to 6% of all children have some form of
food allergy, and if you think about that, that’s really about 1-2 children in every
classroom in America on average. It’s a growing danger Dr. Denny knows all
too well. Which is why she not only supports the new law, she lobbied for it in Ohio. Not only will it save lives, but I think that
this will also raise awareness on food allergies and how dangerous and severe they really can
be. At Nationwide Children’s Hospital, this is
Clark Powell reporting.


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