Yesterday, New Jersey Governor Chris Christy signed Bill A-4094/S-2884 – entitled the “Epinephrine Access and Emergency Treatment Act” – into law after being passed unanimously by both the Senate and Assembly in December 2015. The legislation takes effect this May.
The law allows individuals who have completed a training course approved by the Commissioner of Health to obtain and administer epinephrine auto-injectors for emergency use, and employers of those individuals to obtain stock epinephrine for use by them. The legislation also provides the necessary “Good Samaritan” provisions to shield those authorized to administer epinephrine from liability when the drug is administered in good faith during an anaphylactic emergency.
The term “stock epinephrine” means epinephrine that is prescribed for general use in case of an anaphylactic emergency. Anaphylaxis is a serious, sometimes life-threatening allergic reaction to a food, medication or insect sting. Epinephrine is the only approved treatment for anaphylaxis and should be administered as soon as anaphylaxis is suspected.
Anaphylaxis can strike at any time, even in those with no prior history of allergy. The legislation is important because it will expand the availability of epinephrine in the state and the number of people trained and authorized to administer it. The bill also provides the necessary “Good Samaritan” provisions to shield those authorized to administer epinephrine from liability when administered in good faith.
We at SnackSafely.com congratulate the people of New Jersey and applaud the efforts of the bill’s sponsors: Herb Conaway Jr, Troy Singleton, Benjie E Wimberly, Pamela R Lambitt, Daniel R Benson, Jim Whelan, Fred H Madden Jr, Craig J Coughlin, Mila M Jasey, Nancy J Pinkin, and Dawn Marie Addiego.
We urge other states to follow suit and look forward to the day when epinephrine auto-injectors are as accessible as AEDs (automatic defibrillator devices) are currently.