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Message for physicians from the BC Ministry of Health re: EPIPEN® shortage

August 3, 2018

With the current shortage of EpiPen 0.3mg/0.3 mL product predicted to continue throughout the month of August, the BC Ministry of Health is advising physicians to be aware that pharmacists may choose to dispense pre-drawn syringes or ampoules of epinephrine for adult patients.

As the EpiPen shortage is widespread and severe, it is unlikely that pharmacists will be able to consistently communicate alternative epinephrine product selection to physicians.  Physicians are advised to discuss this possibility with their patients when writing a prescription for epinephrine.
 
If, in a physician’s clinical judgement, a patient does not have the capacity to safely administer a syringe, the physician may wish to connect with the pharmacy to determine availability of an EpiPen device.  The MoH is directing pharmacies to generally reserve the EpiPen Jr. product for pediatric patients.

For more information, please contact BCPhA at (604) 261-2092 or toll-free in BC at 1-800-663-2480.