Information for first aid trainers and providers
Where to find authoritative information on anaphylaxis and resources:
- Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA) (external site) is a professional medical organisation which promotes education and the highest standard of ethical medical practice. ASCIA provides education resources
Learning about anaphylaxis for first aid trainers and providers
- ASCIA anaphylaxis first aid (community) e-training course is available free of charge (external site)
- For paramedics, health professionals, pharmacists and health professionals there are also advanced courses (external site) available.
Did you know that guidelines for anaphylaxis first aid have been updated by the Australian Resuscitation Council (ARC)?
- The Australian Resuscitation Council (ARC) anaphylaxis guidelines, July 2012 (PDF 41KB)
An important update concerns the positioning of the patient in anaphylaxis. The recommendation is:
"Lay victim flat, do not stand or walk, if breathing is difficult, allow to sit."
Anaphylaxis can cause very low blood pressure and if the patient is upright, blood cannot be returned to the heart. Being upright during a severe allergic reaction is a significant risk factor for fatal anaphylaxis.
Are you aware of the relevant legislation currently in force in WA?
- Delayed adrenaline treatment is associated with fatal anaphylaxis. When anaphylaxis occurs respond immediately and appropriately by following the ASCIA Action Plan for Anaphylaxis. It is important to lay the person flat and not allow them to stand or walk, if breathing is difficult allow them to sit and, without delay, administer an adrenaline autoinjector. After administering adrenaline call an ambulance. In WA, permission does not need to be sought from 000 ambulance services to give an adrenaline autoinjector.
- School and childcare staff do not need to seek permission from a parent before administering adrenaline to a child in their care with signs of anaphylaxis. Schools and child care staff acting in good faith and without recklessness are protected by State legislation Health, Safety and Civil Liability (Children in Schools and Child Care Services) Act (WA) 2011 (PDF 30KB) Civil Liability Act (WA) 2002 (external site), School Education Act (WA) 1999 (external site), and Civil Liability Act (WA) 2002 Regulations (external site)))
- WA has made specific legislative provisions for schools and child care services to hold adrenaline autoinjectors for general use without requiring a Poisons Permit, through an exemption to the WA Poisons Act (WA) 1964 (external site) - Poisons Regulations (WA) 1965 exemption 41D (PDF 15KB), Services can purchase adrenaline autoinjectors over the counter from a pharmacy.