This month our blog post is brought to us by Zak Marks CEO & Co Founder of Kitt Medical. Zak explains the reasons behind the development of the Anaphylaxis Kitt.
I’ve lived with severe allergies to nuts my entire life.
I never eat anything unless I know what’s in it.
I have to ask every time. No free samples, no guessing games.
I always carry two adrenaline auto-injectors wherever I go.
They usually don’t fit in my pocket, so that means I’ve almost always got a bag with me.
I get told almost every time I eat out that they can’t ‘guarantee’ the food I’m about to eat will kill me. They sometimes even joke about it.
Living with a serious allergy is bizarre, most of these things are so ingrained that I don’t really notice them anymore – it’s only when someone else points it out that I realise the strangeness of it all.
But you can develop an allergy to anything at any time, and there are more than 3 million allergy sufferers in the UK, and an estimated 550 million spread worldwide.
Adrenaline pens are inconvenient to carry all the time, easy to forget and expires every year, so it’s no surprise that almost half of all allergy sufferers leave it at home when they go out.
During my final year at university I felt particularly frustrated with all these issues, and worked hard to try and come up with an idea for the solution.
I wanted to be able to provide all public spaces, from schools, to restaurants to stadiums – with their own anaphylaxis prevention and treatment system.
Just like a defibrillator, but for allergies.
Just one look in the news headlines in recent times and the need for something like this is immediately justified.
Whether it be Natasha Ednan-Laperouse, Owen Carey, Megan Lee, James Atkinson… The list goes on.
Each of these tragic and untimely deaths has slowly brought attention to the need for greater allergy legislation and innovation. But it’s not enough to just be reactive. It’s time to be proactive.
1 in 5 allergy sufferers live in constant fear of dying from a serious allergic reaction. And that fear is justified given the lack of awareness, preparation, and availability of medications for allergic conditions.
Before 2017, adrenaline auto-injectors (Epipen, Jext, Emerade, etc.) were only carried by people who had allergies.
Then, a young child named Karanbir Cheema had a severe allergic reaction to cheese at his school in West London, and the only treatment available was his own expired adrenaline pen.
As many news headlines tragically stated, that pen wasn’t able to stop the fatal anaphylactic reaction that ensued.
In response to this (and campaign work from Allergy UK & Anaphylaxis Campaign) the British government passed a law allowing schools to purchase and stock adrenaline auto-injectors.
And there’s now movements to spread this law to all public places in the UK – from restaurants to hotels to stadiums.
As an allergy sufferer myself, I’m incredibly driven to ensure that Kitt Medical is the first proactive approach to countering the many problems associated with allergies and anaphylaxis.
We provide adrenaline pens in a secure wall mounted Kitt, along with online accredited training and backed up by our incident reporting and management software, all under one affordable life-saving subscription service.
We ran a successful pilot phase with a handful of schools across England in late 2021, and now (off the back of recently winning the Mayor of London’s Health Entrepreneur Award) aim to launch in all schools across the UK for the Autumn term of 2022.
We should be aiming for a better standard of allergy care in our restaurants, in our schools, in all venues.
Contact Zak email@example.com