The Allergy & Asthma Network (AAN) is supporting the Airline Access to Emergency Epinephrine Act. The act, now before the U.S. Congress, is being considered as a requirement for airlines. It would require stocking and training staff in the use of epinephrine auto-injectors on board aircraft.
The legislation was introduced by Senators Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) in the United States Senate as Senate Bill 1972. Tonya Winders, President and CEO of Allergy & Asthma Network said in a statement: “Congress is poised to do much more: Senate Bill 1972, the Airline Access to Emergency Epinephrine Act, will increase awareness and preparedness for responding to a life-threatening allergic reaction in a vulnerable place – 30,000 feet in the air.”
What SB 1972 would require:
SB 1972 would require that airlines carry epinephrine auto-injectors for use in the event of an anaphylactic emergency. It would also require them to train crewmembers to recognize the symptoms of an acute allergic reaction and the administer the epinephrine for it. It would also direct the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) to conduct and submit a report to Congress on airline policies relating to passengers with food allergies.
FAA regulations already require that epinephrine vials be included in flight emergency medical kits. These are usually in the form of a vial that must be drawn and then injected with a needle. This bill would replace those with auto-injector pens. This would replace the requirement for formal medical training in vial usage as the pre-dosed auto-injectors require little training to use.
AAN is voicing support, asking for help in lobbying for a companion bill in the U.S. House.
The AAN is joining with other advocacy groups who support the bill and asking others to help push for a companion bill in the United States House of Representatives as well as for voting on SB 1972.
AAN has set up an information page on the bill with details on how those interested may be able to help. You can find that on their website here.