Big Push for Bill to Stock EpiPens in Public Venues

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Food allergy advocates hope the third time is the charm for legislation that would allow life-saving medication to be stocked at public venues in Missouri.

The foundation is asking the public to contact lawmakers and ask that the bill be moved out of committee and onto the House floor for debate.

The bill would clear the way for places like sports arenas, museums and restaurants to stock epinephrine auto-injectors. The devices can help stop life-threatening allergic reactions to things like food and bee stings. The last two years the measure has been overshadowed by other priorities in Jefferson City.

Joy Krieger, Executive Director of St. Louis Chapter of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation, says allergic reactions are becoming more common.

“Asthma used to be the number one concern for school nurses, food allergies have taken over. Severe food allergies are on the rise, and it’s a very, very serious condition,” she says.

Krieger says staff who would administer epinephrine could not be held liable. They would have to complete training in spotting the signs of a serious allergic reaction and how to handle the situation, including administering the shot and calling 911. She also addressed arguments that stocking the medications in a public place could pose risks.

“There shouldn’t be any fear of this law, because even if someone did receive this medication, nothing will happen to you. Your heart will go up a little,” she says.

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