If you have severe allergies, you’re likely a pretty cautious person. But accidents happen, so you’ll want to be extra cautious for the next little while.
Pfizer Canada and Health Canada report that there is a shortage of EpiPen auto-injectors in the 0.3 mg format (DIN 00509558).
According to Pfizer Canada, the shortage is reportedly due to a “manufacturing disruption” that is expected to be resolved by March 2, 2018.
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“At this time, there is limited supply of auto-injectors at wholesalers, distributors and at pharmacies,” says Pfizer Canada.
“While we are working closely with our distributors to avoid long-term supply shortage at the store level, we expect a period of between two and four weeks of no inventory. Additional limited inventory will be supplied at the beginning of February 2018 which will be placed under allocation and we will continue to manage supply carefully.”
The shortage does not impact EpiPen Jr (0.15 mg) products, which are available.
“EpiPen is used to deliver an emergency treatment of adrenaline (epinephrine) to patients who are at risk or have a history of life-threatening allergic reactions (anaphylaxis),” says Health Canada. “There are currently no alternative auto-injectors available on the market in Canada.”
Epipen auto-injectors expire on the last day of the month — so, if an EpiPen’s packaging says it expires in “January,” it expires on January 31.
While Health Canada would generally advise individuals with life-threatening allergies have a few auto-injectors with different expiry dates to avoid having an expired auto-injector.
With this shortage, however, Health Canada Health Canada advises anyone having an anaphylactic reaction to use the expired product and call 9-1-1 immediately. Moreover, the individual should go to the nearest hospital as instructed on the product.
For more information, click here or speak to your healthcare professional.