Information updates

17 September 2018
ASCIA 2018 Conference Co chairs Dr Elizabeth da Silva and Assoc Prof Katrina Randall

Congratulations and thank you to the ASCIA 2018 conference co-chairs A/Prof Katrina Randall and Dr Elizabeth da Silva, as well as their organising committee (listed below). The ASCIA 2018 Conference in Canberra was a great success, with more than 600 registrations, an outstanding program and a fabulous gala dinner at Old Parliament House. The positive feedback received from delegates has indicated that the ASCIA Annual Conference was once again a highlight of the year for ASCIA members and other health professionals who work in allergy and immunology. 

Thank you also to the following international speakers who presented at the conference:

  • Prof Carlos Camargo (USA)
  • A/Prof David Fleischer (USA)
  • Prof David Jayne (UK)
  • Prof Marc Riedl (USA)
  • Prof Jonathan Spergel (USA)
  • Dr Gulbu Uzel (USA)

Prof Antonella Muraro was unfortunately unable to travel due to an acute illness.  We thank A/Prof David Fleischer for agreeing to present in the Food Allergy Plenary and Prof Dianne Campbell for presenting in the CFAR Symposium.

ASCIA 2018 Basten Orator Dr Ray Mullins and Prof Anthony BastenWe would also like to take this opportunity to thank:

  • Basten Orator - Dr Raymond Mullins, who presented a fascinating history of ASCIA as part of a narrative review of food allergy/anaphylaxis in Australia; and to Prof Antony Basten for travelling to Canberra for the Oration
  • Invited speakers and chairs (more than 80) from Australia or New Zealand, including Dr Nitin Gupta, Prof Richard Kitching, Prof Daniel (Avi) Lemberg, Dr Geoffrey Peters, Dr Stuart Schembri and Dr Doug Taupin
  • Organising committee members - Dr Anthea Anantharajah, Dr Gary Chew, Prof Matthew Cook, Dr Carolyn Hawkins, Dr Raymond Mullins
  • Nurses Day convenors - Narelle Duncan, Elise Field, Lucy McCabe, Anastasia Wilson
  • Inaugural ASCIA Medical Associates Day convenors - Dr Nick Cooling, Dr Victoria Smith
  • Inaugural ASCIA DAA Dietitian course convenors - Ingrid Roche and Caroline Salisbury
  • GP Allergy Update convenor – Dr Raymond Mullins
  • CFAR symposium chair - Prof Katie Allen and the CFAR team
  • National Allergy Strategy breakfast team – A/Prof Richard Loh, Maria Said and Sandra Vale who presented some excellent news about long term funding to kick off the conference.
  • Sponsors and exhibitors, who continue to support the ASCIA annual conference and other educational initiatives
  • ASCIA and ICMSA staff, who all worked tirelessly to ensure that the conference was such a success

More than 100 abstracts were received for the ASCIA 2018 Conference, comprising:

  • 17 oral clinical grand rounds case presentations, including 6 PID cases presented at the Friday PID breakfast
  • 10 research oral presentations
  • 78 posters, including 19 selected for oral presentations

Congratulations to the clinical grand rounds case and poster award winners who are listed on the ASCIA website www.allergy.org.au/hp/awards-grants/ascia-award-grant-scholarship-recipients#s1 

All abstracts will be published online in the Internal Medicine Journal by the end of this month, with a link from the ASCIA website www.allergy.org.au/conferences/ascia-annual-conference/published-abstracts-ascia

The ASCIA Annual General Meeting for 2017-2018 was held during the ASCIA 2018 Conference on Thursday 14 September. In case you missed it, the Minutes are available at www.allergy.org.au/members/ascia-agm  

The AGM included ASCIA Council elections, so we thank all outgoing members and welcome new Directors and Council members, who are listed on the ASCIA website www.allergy.org.au/members/committees 

We look forward to your participation in the ASCIA 2019 Conference in Perth next September, to celebrate the 30th Anniversary of ASCIA. For preliminary information visit www.ascia2019.com

27 August 2018

The National Allergy Strategy Food Allergy Prevention Project “Nip Allergies in the Bub” was launched today in Western Australia, where it will be piloted for a year, before it is launched throughout Australia. This project is the first in the world to promote feeding children the common allergy causing foods by one year of age, to help prevent food allergy from developing. 

The website www.preventallergies.org.au contains practical information for parents and carers about introducing foods and managing eczema for allergy prevention.  It also includes information and resources for health professionals.

It is important to note that the websites and other resources developed for National Allergy Strategy projects can also be used in New Zealand.

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20 August 2018: 

The National Allergy Strategy event at Parliament House Canberra on Thursday 16 August 2018 was a great achievement in advocacy for all Australians living with allergic disease, with the government announcing 5 years of funding for National Allergy Strategy initiatives. 

The acknowledgment  of allergic disease and its impact on so many Australians was evident by the bipartisan support from Greg Hunt MP, Ken Wyatt MP, Senator Richard Di Natale and Catherine King MP, who all spoke at the event.  Thank you to A/Prof Richard Loh, Maria Said, Barry Hickey and Jaclyn Jauhiainen, who also spoke at the event, and to Dr William Smith (ASCIA President) and Dr Brynn Wainstein (ASCIA President Elect) who attended the event.

Thank you also to Sandra Vale for coordinating the National Allergy Strategy, Rikki Dunstall for providing support, and all the supporters who attended the event and/or have contributed to the outstanding success of the National Allergy Strategy.  For more information go to www.nationalallergystrategy.org.au 

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7 August 2018: 

It is a pleasure to announce that the ASCIA website www.allergy.org.au has been redesigned to be more user and device friendly. 

The ASCIA website is a trusted and extremely popular source of information about allergy and other immune diseases.  We have therefore not changed the content.  However, we have updated the design and streamlined some of the urls (uniform resource locators) to improve access.

If you cannot find what you are looking for, please try our Search function.  This is available in the header on each page for desk or laptop devices or from the menu on smaller devices such as tablets and smart phones.

We look forward to your feedback.

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To take advantage of the discounted earlybird registration rates for the ASCIA 2018 Conference you need to register by the extended deadline of Monday 23 July 2018.

This is also the extended deadline for poster and clinical grand round abstract submissions.  Please note that no further extensions will be possible.

To register go to www.ascia2018.com/registration.php  

To view the program go to www.ascia2018.com/program.php

To submit an abstract for a poster or clinical grand rounds presentation (the latter is for advanced trainees only) go to www.ascia2018.com/abstracts.php  

The ASCIA 2018 conference will run for 3 days, from Wednesday 5 to Friday 7 September 2018 at the National Convention Centre in Canberra. 

It will include concurrent sessions for Nurses and Medical Associate ASCIA members on Friday 7 September. 

The following events are also being held in conjunction with the conference:

  • Centre for Food and Allergy Research (CFAR) Symposium 2018 on Tuesday 4 September
  • ASCIA Autoimmunity Update on Saturday 8 September
  • ASCIA GP Update on Saturday 8 September
  • ASCIA-DAA Dietitians Course on Friday 7 and Saturday 8 September

We look forward to your participation.

Registration is now open at www.ascia2018.com for the ASCIA 2018 conference, the 29th annual conference of the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA).

The ASCIA 2018 conference will run for 3 days, from Wednesday 5 to Friday 7 September 2018 at the National Convention Centre in Canberra.  It will include concurrent sessions for Nurses and Medical Associate ASCIA members on Friday 7 September.  The following events are also being held in conjunction with the conference:

  • Centre for Food and Allergy Research (CFAR) Symposium 2018 on Tuesday 4 September
  • ASCIA Autoimmunity Update on Saturday 8 September
  • ASCIA GP Update on Saturday 8 September
  • ASCIA-DAA Dietitians Course on Friday 7 and Saturday 8 September

To register go to www.ascia2018.com/registration.php (earlybird deadline is 16 July 2018)

To view the program go to www.ascia2018.com/program.php

To submit an abstract for a poster or clinical grand rounds presentation (the latter is for advanced trainees only) go to www.ascia2018.com/abstracts.php (deadline is 16 July 2018)

To submit an abstract for an oral research presentation go to www.allergy.org.au/conferences/ascia-annual-conference (deadline is 1 June 2018)

In addition to 6 international speakers, and around 50 speakers and chairs from Australasia, we expect over 500 delegates to participate in this conference.

ASCIA annual conferences provide an international standard of continuing professional development and an opportunity to interact with colleagues working in these areas. ASCIA conferences are therefore a highlight of the year for ASCIA members and other health professionals with an interest in allergy and clinical immunology.

If you have time pre or post conference, visit https://visitcanberra.com.au/ for information on what to see and do in and around Canberra.

We look forward to seeing you in Canberra in September.

Dr Katrina Randall and Dr Elizabeth da Silva
ASCIA 2018 Co-Chairs

Dr William Smith
ASCIA President          

Jill Smith
ASCIA CEO

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17 May 2018: 

EpiPen® 300mcg adrenaline (epinephrine) autoinjectors continue to be distributed each week via wholesalers to pharmacies. Mylan has recently introduced an EpiPen toll-free hotline 1800 931 625 for inquiries about supply.  If a pharmacy is out of stock the pharmacist should contact their wholesaler/s to obtain stock. If there are any problems they should phone 1800 931 625 (AU) or 0800 168 169 (NZ).

Whilst the use of an expired adrenaline autoinjector is not ideal, research suggests that recently expired devices retain potency. Therefore, if no other adrenaline autoinjector is available, use of a recently expired device to treat anaphylaxis is advised, as stated on the ASCIA website: www.allergy.org.au/health-professionals/anaphylaxis-resources/adrenaline-autoinjector-storage-expiry-and-disposal

Due to safety concerns ASCIA does not recommend doctors, pharmacists and other health professionals to advise patients or their carers to learn to draw up adrenaline using an adrenaline ampoule, needle and syringe.  Whilst using a recently expired device is not ideal, this is a safer option for patients at risk of anaphylaxis, than using an adrenaline ampoule, needle and syringe. 

In the case of anaphylaxis, patients or their carers should follow instructions on their ASCIA Action Plan www.allergy.org.au/anaphylaxis - Give EpiPen® and call an ambulance by phoning 000 (AU) or 111 (NZ). 

Patients and/or carers who require advice should contact the national patient support organisations, Allergy & Anaphylaxis Australia (phone 1300 728 000 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or Allergy New Zealand  www.allergy.org.nz

 

8 May 2018

The ASCIA website article on tick allergy has been updated to highlight the following information on how to remove ticks to prevent allergic reactions.

To prevent allergic reactions to ticks do NOT forcibly remove the tick. Disturbing the tick may cause the tick to inject more allergen-containing saliva. The options are to:

  1. Leave tick in place and seek medical assistance; OR
  2. Freeze tick (using a product that rapidly freezes and kills the tick) and allow to drop off.

Allergic reactions to ticks range from mild (with large local swelling and inflammation at the site of a tick bite) to severe (anaphylaxis)

While the “tick season” is often considered to range from around February to August, when adults ticks are more prevalent, ticks are present all year round. Therefore the risk of exposure to ticks remains throughout the entire year, particularly on the east coast of Australia, with known populations of ticks. 

For more information go to www.allergy.org.au/ticks

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