Mairead McGuinness MEP, Vice President of the European Parliament and member of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, will host a breakfast briefing on the public health challenges of anaphylaxis at the European Parliament on 22 November.

Ms McGuinness hosts the event on behalf of Medicines for Ireland, the representative body for the Irish generic and biosimilar medicines industry.

The event, a high-level, multi-stakeholder breakfast briefing, will discuss the public health challenges around anaphylaxis and access to Adrenaline Auto-Injectors (AAIs) in Europe, with a particular focus on examples of good policy practice as demonstrated by Member States – including Ireland.

Our speakers include Ms Antonella Muraro, Past-President of EAACI and current chair of the EAACI Anaphylaxis Task Force; Professor Dr Margitta Worm, Head of Allergy and Immunology at Charité Hospital in Berlin; and Dr Ranbir Kaulsay, Consultant Allergist at Bon Secours Hospital, Dublin, Ireland.
Food allergy is a growing public health concern affecting more than 17 million people in Europe alone. Moreover, food allergy is a leading cause of anaphylaxis in children 14 years and younger. Research indicates that there is a 7-fold increase in hospital admissions for severe allergic reactions in children in the last 10 years. While anaphylaxis is considered uncommon, figures may be underestimated due to under-reporting of incidence. What is clear, however, is that the mortal threat to life as a direct consequence of anaphylaxis is significant.

In an emergency scenario, ease of accessibility and a rapid response can be a matter of life and death. Countries such as Ireland, among others, have taken a positive step in this direction by expanding access to AAIs – in the case of Ireland, through legislation. We believe that all EU Members States must now work together in ensuring greater access to adrenaline in emergency situations.

This event will consider, debate and examine how to increase awareness of and access to AAIs in practice, and the roles that must be played by all advocates – legislators, policymakers, healthcare professionals and others – to improve the health and quality of life of food allergy sufferers.
We will call on those in attendance to bring the message of a unified policy on the prevention and management of allergies and anaphylaxis, as well as enhanced access to AAIs back to their national governments.

To find out more or register your attendance, please contact Nuala at info@medicinesforireland.ie.