Idaho considering food allergy law for schools

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Idaho lawmakers are now considering legislation that would permit schools to keep epinephrine injectors on hand, without specific prescriptions, for students or staff who have unexpected, severe allergic reactions.

Behind the legislation is the Treasure Valley Food Allergy Network (TVAN).

No prescription needed

Under current law, Idaho's public schools cannot keep epineprhine auto-injectors on hand except for students who have a specific prescription. The new legislation was presented to the Idaho legislature's Health Care Task Force by pharmacist Starla Higdon, head of the TVAN. The bill will be under consideration in January when the legislature meets officially.

Higden answered questions and addressed concerns from the representatives of the task force, including how much injectors cost and where that money could come from. One representative, Brandon Hixon of Caldwell, was concerned that the bill removes liability for school personnel who administer the injections.

"I understand the difficulty," said Task Force Co-Chairman Dean Cameron (R-Rupert), who said he has a granddaughter with severe food allergies.

At a press conference he said of the bill, "It may be a start, but it may need some work as well."

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