Growing awareness spotlights kids' food allergies

There has been an increase in awareness around pediatric food allergies and the potential children have for eating something they’re not supposed to while at school following the January death of a 7-year-old student in Virginia.

That death has both reinvigorated support behind the 2011 School Access to Emergency Epinephrine Act — which would require schools to have epinephrine auto-injectors on hand — and generated awareness around the prevalence of food allergies in children today. “While many state policies allow students to carry this medication to school, including Virginia, there is an obvious lack of education about, and compliance with, this policy,” stated the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America in a January statement.

According to a recent survey released by the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network, 47% of parents indicated that they were aware of one to two other children in their child’s classroom who also had food allergies. This finding is in line with the latest statistics that show 1-in-13 U.S. children have a food allergy, according to a study published in June by Pediatrics, the journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Highlights of the survey findings can be viewed here.