Charity launches new online course to protect hospital patients with allergies: An anaphylaxis charity that provides food allergy safety training and support has launched a brand new online learning course for the hospital service staff.
The Anaphylaxis Campaign, which already offers several free and paid allergy courses to individuals, schools and healthcare professionals, developed its new course after a patient safety alert issued by the Food Safety Regulatory Agency. medicines and healthcare in January 2020. The alert highlighted the lack of allergy awareness in hospital settings, putting patients with food allergies at risk.
Between May 10, 2017 and May 10, 2019, 55 hospital trusts reported 77 allergen-related incidents at the hospital, three of which involved the patient with anaphylaxis, a serious and life-threatening illness. Of these incidents, 51 were due to an incorrect meal given to the patient and 13 were due to an inappropriate menu choice, either by the patient or by a staff member. Other causes were due to outdated allergen information, patient allergies not communicated to kitchen staff, incorrect advice from kitchen staff, and conflicting information regarding a patient’s allergy.
Although it is mandatory for NHS organizations to report patient safety incidents that result in serious injury or death, food allergy incidents may not be considered serious injury.
In November 2020, an independent review of NHS Hospital Food was published, also highlighting the need for greater food allergy awareness.
The new Anaphylaxis campaign AllergyWise for Hospital Ward Staff was designed to help nurses, orderlies, ward managers, dietitians and other ward staff improve their knowledge of food allergies and ensure the right meal arrives at the right place. patient.
The course, which lasts approximately two hours, covers how to provide emergency treatment in the event of an allergic reaction and how to protect vulnerable patients at risk of anaphylaxis. Staff will learn:
- on the practical management of food allergies in hospitals
- about common allergens and common causes of severe allergic reactions.
- about managing allergen avoidance and how to reduce the risk of cross-contamination.
- how to recognize the signs and symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, what to do in an emergency.
The course includes quick tests, interactive diagrams, and videos for an easier and more engaging learning experience. The course does not need to be completed in one sitting as progress is recorded. Students can also purchase a certificate on completion for £6.
Simon Williams, Managing Director of the Anaphylaxis Campaign, said: “Being in hospital can be a very scary and isolating time without the added worry of a life-threatening allergic reaction and recent statistics show that it is a big concern.
“Our AllergyWise courses address the growing need for education and understanding of what to do in an emergency. This new course has been developed to help hospital staff gain the knowledge and understanding necessary to ensure the safety of patients with severe allergies. »
Tanya Wright, an allergy specialist dietician at St Mary’s Hospital in London, says:
“It’s a great course and the format is very engaging. The quizzes and the final quiz at the very end are really helpful.
To register for the AllergyWise for Hospital Ward Staff course, please visit www.allergywise.org.uk
Anaphylaxis Campaign was established in 1994 by Honorary President David Reading after his 17-year-old daughter Sarah died of an allergic reaction to peanuts. We are the only UK-wide charity operating solely for the growing number of people at risk of severe allergic reactions and anaphylaxis.
Aimmune has supported the hospital’s food project through a grant – the grant does not constitute the charity’s endorsement of Aimmune’s products or services and is fully consistent with the Aimmune’s Code of Conduct. ABPI.
Anaphylaxis is a severe and often sudden allergic reaction. This can happen when an allergic person is exposed to something they are allergic to. Reactions usually occur within minutes and progress rapidly, but can occur up to 2-3 hours later. It is potentially fatal and always requires immediate emergency response.