Q:

1/11/2014
We currently give allergy shots to our college students, based on the orders from their referring allergists. Is there a preferred level of healthcare worker for allergy shot administration? Are there any published papers showing this recommendation? We currently use RN's, LPN's, and medical assistants to administer allergy shots. I am concerned about the liability of allowing medical assistants to complete this task, even if well trained and under an RN's supervision. Thank-you for any information that you can provide regarding recommendations or standards of practice from the AAAAI.

A:

Thank you for your inquiry.

I have copied below the statement from the most recent Practice Parameter on allergen immunotherapy (1).

Quote: "Regardless of the location, allergen immunotherapy should be administered under the supervision of an appropriately trained physician and personnel."

As you can see, the Parameter states only that the person administering immunotherapy be "appropriately trained." It does not specify that this person should have any particular degree. This would imply, therefore, that an appropriately trained medical assistant could be used to administer injections.

Thank you again for your inquiry and we hope this response is helpful to you.

Reference:
1. Cox L, et al. Allergen immunotherapy: a practice parameter, second update. The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, September 2007; Volume 120 (3), page S25-S85.

Sincerely,
Phil Lieberman, M.D.

AAAAI - American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology