Ready, Set, Food! Program Provides Early Allergen Introduction Kits for Families on Medicaid


Numerous studies have confirmed that early introduction of allergens during the first four to six months of life is vital to preventing the development of food allergies.

But this often proves difficult for families on Medicaid who have less access to affordable infant-safe foods. The barrier to early introduction exposes them to greater risk of developing food allergies later in life.

Said Daniel Zakowski, CEO of Ready, Set, Food!:

They actually end up with about two and a half times more [emergency room] visits and greater hospitalization costs as a result of their food allergens because they don’t have access to EpiPens. They don’t have access to allergen-free foods. There aren’t really other support mechanisms to help them in the right way.

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To address this obstacle, Ready, Set, Food! has launched its Access for All program by providing its allergen introduction kits to families in Missouri that receive Medicaid.

Said Zakowski:

Our product is a powder of allergenic protein that dissolves in breast milk, formula or food. So that way, you don’t have to add anything new to the baby’s diet. It has virtually no taste, and it’s very easy.

Stage 1 and 2 kits that contain peanut, egg, and milk proteins are provided through the program. The company’s Stage 3 kits contain tree nut, sesame and wheat proteins as well as those of other common allergens.

Said Zakowski:

Our program with Medicaid, though, focuses on just the stage one and two products because peanut, egg and milk have such a high prevalence. That’s where there’s the best [return on investment] for Medicaid and also to make it a more long-term, sustainable program.

Home State Health will facilitate distribution of the kits via local providers.

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Healthcare systems throughout Missouri that service families on Medicare will offer the kits to families of infants when they come in for their visits at four months and again at six months. Upon receiving these kits, physicians will offer education on early introduction as well.

The program was initiated in February and the company provides training to healthcare providers to administer the kits.

Ready, Set, Food! is hoping to expand the program to other states via Medicaid providers, but conforming to state-by-state regulations for dietary supplements will mean that some states launch earlier than others.

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Dave Bloom
Dave Bloom
Dave Bloom is CEO and "Blogger in Chief" of

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