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Allergy tests, legislation may assist food-allergic children

Category: Allergy Testing

A bill under consideration in Congress aims to help schools manage nearly 8,600 students with potentially lethal food allergies in New York.

Under the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Management Act, schools would be eligible for $30 million in funding, distributed in grants of up to $50,000, for the organization of new procedures and staff to handle food allergy programs, Times Union reports. The bill would also develop standardized food allergy handling guideline for early childhood education programs, according to New York Senator, Charles Schumer.

Health officials estimate that nearly 1 in 25 students have a food allergy in New York's Albany, Fulton, Montgomery, Rensselair, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie and Washington counties.

A father of a child with food allergies, Schumer told the news source the inability to "control the snacks given out or whether the school cafeteria cooks with peanut oil" can be a "nerve-racking" experience for parents.

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has delineated four allergy diagnostic tests to gauge a person's aversion to certain allergens. An elimination diet test seeks to remove foods from a diet one at a time to indentify the cause of a reaction. Blood tests, skin tests and provocation tests can also be used to detect anti-bodies produced by allergic reactions.

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