Allergy Today: Spring/Summer 2021

Allergy News – New research on the refining of pollen forecasting – New Masterclass programme 2021 – Meeting The Needs Of Allergy Patients In Primary Care Post Pandemic- Venom Allergy – The Role of the Pharmacist in Supporting People with Allergies

In my Foreword to the last edition of Allergy Today, when the Covid pandemic was in its second wave in the UK, I referred to the vaccination programme that was starting to be rolled out as the ‘light at the end of the tunnel’. Four months later and that light has become considerably brighter with nearly 34 million people in the UK having received their first vaccination. This world beating programme continues at a considerable pace into the Summer, as lock down eases and we navigate the RoadMap set out by government.

For individuals and families living with allergies this has, and continues to be, an exceptionally anxious time. Their feelings of vulnerability because of conditions such as asthma have been exacerbated by worries about access to clinical support and the medications they need and, above all, about their own potential susceptibility to the virus. Now the good news about vaccinations brings with it a further fear about the risk of a serious reaction to the vaccines being administered.

Addressing these fears relies on the provision of clear and consistent information to guide and reassure. Allergy UK has been working with the BSACI to provide this information through its various channels, including the Helpline, addressing all the questions that come through to the charity with clinical accuracy. It is completely understandable that many in the allergic community are cautious about having a vaccination, given their experiences of reactions to allergens in the past. But we must help to ensure, as far as we can, that those who are able to have a vaccination safely do so for their future protection from this life threatening disease. At the same time, as we anticipate further news of a possible vaccine ‘passport’, we must seek to get a better understanding of the implications for those people whose allergic conditions mean that they cannot have the vaccine and ensure that these people are fairly represented in the proposal.

Once again, this issue of Allergy Today contains articles from leading experts on a range of allergic conditions, including a timely piece which focuses on learnings around meeting the needs of allergy patients of allergy patients in primary care one year on from the start of the pandemic. I hope you find this, and all the articles in this edition useful and informative in the care of your allergy patients.

Professor Adam Fox
Chair of the Allergy UK Health Advisory Board
Consultant Paediatric Allergist, Evelina London Children’s Hospital