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Scotland’s pharmacies sign up for anaphylaxis campaign

By Scotland Correspondent

More than half of community pharmacies in Scotland have signed up to a new campaign to provide emergency anaphylaxis treatment.

Community Pharmacy Scotland, which launched the campaign last week (9 August 2013), is asking all pharmacies to join. Participating pharmacies will stock adrenaline auto-injector devices (both adult and child strengths) and undertake training on how to administer them. Pharmacies will also display an orange cross, indicating that they can provide emergency anaphylaxis treatment.

Jo Swinson MP (Lib Dem, East Dunbartonshire), who had a life-threatening anaphylatic reaction to nuts earlier this year, said: "I whole-heartedly support the Community Pharmacy Scotland campaign and its work to improve access to emergency treatment. I would encourage pharmacists, and anyone else for that matter, to spread the message of the importance of giving adrenaline and calling an ambulance as soon as possible after someone reacts."

One community pharmacy that has experience of administering an adrenaline injection is Davidsons Chemist in Aberfeldy, Perth and Kinross. Dispenser Karen Duguid told PJ Online: "A man came into the pharmacy asking for help after some sort of insect had flown into his face and stung him. His face was painful, tingling, red and swollen. He then collapsed at the counter. Our pharmacist, Mark Jenkins, recognised that it was a serious reaction and administered an EpiPen." The man was taken to hospital and made a full recovery.

Further information about the campaign, including links to training materials and a participation form, is available on the CPS website.

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2013.11124321

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