Updates to emergency kits are being considered by the Federal Aviation Administration, which would mandate that airlines transport EpiPens, pediatric antihistamine doses, and opioid overdose reversal medication.
A standard set of medical supplies, such as aspirin, a stethoscope, and tools for cardiopulmonary resuscitation, or CPR, must be carried by commercial airlines. However, the FAA does not mandate the use of EpiPens or epinephrine auto-injectors on commercial flights, which irks allergists.
Airlines should routinely carry epinephrine auto-injectors and other allergy medications in dosages for both adults and children, according to a recent recommendation from the Aerospace Medical Association to the FAA.
The organization is also thinking about updating the kits to include Narcan, which reverses the effects of opioid overdoses, and automated blood pressure cuffs.
“The FAA is reviewing the emergency medical kit requirements,” the agency said in a statement to NBC News.
Travelers, even those who have never had allergies before, can avoid risk during flights by wiping down seats, armrests and tray tables upon boarding, Jenna Riemenschneider, senior director of advocacy and policy at the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, said.