Allergy sufferers facing continued Epipen shortage
Allergy sufferers are facing a continued shortage of life-saving EpiPens with Australia’s peak advocacy group still receiving complaints.
EpiPen 300mcg autoinjectors, which are used in emergencies for adults and children over 20 kilograms, have been dwindling for months due to manufacturing issues.
Last September the US Food and Drug Administration sent a letter of warning to the manufacturer of EpiPens, a Pfizer subsidiary, citing “significant violations in manufacturing compliance including failures associated with patient deaths and severe illness.”
A Pfizer spokesman said the company expected production rates for EpiPens to increase over the coming months, but it would not commit to when supply problems will be fully resolved.
The critical supply shortage in Australia has forced the government to search for an alternative for local patients.
Maria Said from Allergy and Anaphylaxis Australia told 9NEWS some allergy sufferers were going to great lengths to ensure they remained safe.
“They’re going to 10, 15 pharmacies and still not able to get an EpiPen,” she said. “The issue has been going on for several months.”
The group is now looking at another American supplier Auvi-Q which comes with audible instructions.
Cath Curry’s husband and two children have life-threatening food allergies who need nine EpiPens between them, most of which have expired.
“I’ve had an uphill battle to get those replaced,” she told 9NEWS. “My children have been refused access to after school care.
“It’s not good enough. I think the allergy community of Australia deserve better, frankly.”