EpiPen alternative coming to Canada next month amidst shortage

Aug 30 2018, 1:36 pm

The federal government says an alternative to EpiPens will be available next month for Canadians with life-threatening allergies.

An American product, Auvi-Q, will provide Canadians with an alternative to help ease the current, months-long EpiPen shortage in Canada.

Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor announced she has signed an interim order that will facilitate the import into Canada of the US-approved Auvi-Q, made by Kaléo, auto-injectors.

The order is effective for two weeks while approval is sought to extend the order for up to one year.

AUVI-Q

AUVI-Q

Both EpiPen and Auvi-Q deliver the same labelled dose of epinephrine, however, unlike the Canadian EpiPen, the American alternative has a retractable needle as well as an electronic voice instruction system.

“I’m pleased that we have been able to secure a supply of epinephrine auto-injectors for Canadians with life-threatening allergies and their loved ones, particularly as families across the country are currently preparing for the start of the school year,” said Taylor.

“We will continue to work with partners and stakeholders on long-term solutions to make sure life-saving auto-injectors remain available.”

Auvi-Q 0.3 mg is expected to be available for pharmacies to order by the end of the week and in pharmacies as of September 7.

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