Q:

12/26/2013
Would you have any guidelines available for the handling and storing of allergens, and administration of skin prick testing? Presently, I oversee a NP who does skin prick testing (no intradermal testing nor immunotherapy). The administration and pharmacy at her institute may ask her to follow the guidelines for immunotherapy (certification and testing). Both she and other NPs in allergy feel this is unnecessary. I am looking for some guidelines to support this.

A:

Thank you for your inquiry.

Regulations for storage, skin testing, and administration of immunotherapy differ between "private offices" and clinics that are part of a hospital or are part of an organization where there is a pharmacy.

If you are in a clinic in which you are a part of a hospital where the extracts are prepared under the aegis of the institution or pharmacy, you must follow the guidelines of USP 797. This is a complex document, and you will need to download it. You can download a PDF at no charge.

However, you need not worry about USP 797 at this time if you are a separate private practice who purchases and stores extracts solely for your office. The guidelines that you should follow are contained in the Allergen Immunotherapy Parameters produced by the Joint Task Force. These are available online at no charge at the site of the Joint Council of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology. The reference is: Linda Cox, Harold Nelson, Richard Lockey, Christopher Calabria et al Allergen immunotherapy: A practice parameter third update Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology Vol. 127, Issue 1, Supplement, Pages S1-S55.

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

Sincerely,
Phil Lieberman, M.D.

AAAAI - American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology