ADC allergists available for consulting about food allergy policy

dozens of peanuts in their shellsFood allergies in children are becoming more prevalent.  According to a recent study by Northwestern University, eight percent of all children have a food allergy.  And 38.7 percent of those have a history of severe allergic reactions.  For children in this group, that can mean anaphylactic shock–a whole-body, life-threatening medical condition.

This public health problem has caused the Texas Legislature to act.  This summer legislators passed HB 639, requiring all school districts to have in place by the end of this year policies designed to keep children who are at risk for anaphylaxis safe on campus.

But knowing how to protect children at risk and how to establish policies that guide school staff can be challenging.  And any new set of policies can generate a wide range of responses.

Thomas Smith, MD, and John Villacis, MD, both board-certified allergists at The Austin Diagnostic Clinic (ADC), are available to help school administrators and personnel form policies that best protect students.  Either doctor can meet with staff, concerned parents, or be involved in educational awareness sessions about food allergies.  In particular, they can help school personnel prepare to identify students with food allergies and how to handle an anaphylactic reaction. To protect children from the most severe consequences of food allergies, parents, students, and teachers need to know how to recognize and treat anaphylaxis. At-risk children, for instance, should always carry auto-injectable epinephrine and have an anaphylaxis action plan on file with all schools and caregivers.

If you would like to meet with Dr. Smith or or Dr. Villacis, or would like more information, call 512-901-4414, or send an email to scarnelly@adclinic.com.  As a member of Anaphylaxis Community Experts, a nationwide educational outreach program, there is no charge for Dr. Smith’s or Dr. Villacis’ consultation with your school or parent group.