The Department of Health and Social Care have issued a Supply Disruption Alert regarding limited availability of EpiPen and EpiPen Junior. This situation is likely to last for the remainder of 2018.
Several suggestions are made that will aid effective supply in the coming months:
Due to the limited availability, prescriptions should only be issued where there is truly a need for a new prescription. Prescriptions should not be issued for people worried about the supply situation, but who have pens that are in date, as this will only add to the supply shortage.
The expiry date on the packaging indicates the end of the month when the product expires. Several batches as specified in the alert have also had the expiry date extended by 4 months so it may be prudent to ask for lot numbers before issuing scripts.
Switching between devices may be an option provided the alternatives can be supplied and patients can be instructed upon their use.
Prescribers and pharmacies are encouraged to work together to ensure appropriate items that are in supply are used and are directed to the Specialist Pharmacy Services website for additional updates to supply and clinical guidance.
Action: Clinicians should be aware of this supply situation and follow the recommended actions to relive some of the supply pressures.