EpiPen shortage is putting lives at risk

editorial image

MP Jo Swinson has written to Ministers in Westminster and Holyrood demanding action to address the current shortage of vital adrenalin EpiPens in pharmacies,

She said this has left anaphylaxis sufferers in East Dunbartonshire and across the country concerned about a lack of access to the life-saving treatment.

According to a recent statement from EpiPen, manufacturing delays have caused the shortage of the 0.3mg Adrenaline Auto-Injectors.

Ms Swinson has met with Nicky Forrest, a nurse and 
volunteer, who runs a local Anaphylaxis Campaign Support Group. At the support group meeting, Nicky and other group members highlighted their concerns to the MP.

Ms Swinson said: “It is unacceptable that those with severe allergies face uncertainty over the availability of life-saving treatment. EpiPens save lives.

“Nicky and other members of the Anaphylaxis Campaign Support Group were understandably concerned about the short supply of EpiPens, as many of the group had struggled to get new EpiPens for their children who can go into anaphylactic shock as a result of their allergy.

“I have raised the matter with Jeane Freeman, the Scottish Health Minister, and Jeremy Hunt, the Minister for Health and Social Care in Westminster, urging them to do everything in their power to tackle this shortage.”

A Scottish Government spokesperson told the Herald: “As the regulation of the medical supply chain is reserved to the UK Government, we are liaising with the UK Department of Health and Social Care who are working with the manufacturer of EpiPen to resolve the supply issue as soon as possible.

“There is currently a global supply issue with EpiPen and limited availability is being closely managed to ensure that pharmacies are able to obtain stock.

If patients are unable to obtain a specific EpiPen product, they should speak with their GP who may be able to prescribe a suitable alternative as the situation is resolved.”