Kelly to host "Latex 101" webinar for health care practitioners

Kevin Kelly, MD, pediatrician-in-chief at N.C. Children's Hospital, is a leading international expert on latex allergy, a subject about which he has published more than 100 peer-reviewed articles and abstracts. He will host the webinar, sponsored by the Allergy & Asthma Network and American Latex Allergy Association, on Tuesday, Oct. 7, at 7 p.m. A second webinar, "Hidden Latex Allergy Dangers in Food Service," will be led by Michael Zacharisen, MD, of Bozeman, Montana on Oct. 8.

Allergy & Asthma Network and the American Latex Allergy Association (ALAA) invite members of the public, health care practitioners and food service workers to participate in two free webinars held in observance of Latex Allergy Awareness Week, the first week of October.

Latex allergies impact up to 12 percent of health care workers and 6 percent of the U.S. population, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC). In addition, 68 percent of children with spina bifida have latex allergy. The allergy can be life-threatening, so patients must take special care to avoid contact with latex, which is found in many everyday items, from latex gloves used in health care and food preparation settings, to balloons and exercise balls.

The first webinar, “Latex Allergy 101,” will look at the signs and symptoms of life-threatening latex allergy reactions, and how to respond in an anaphylactic emergency. Presented by Kevin Kelly, MD, pediatrician-in-chief at North Carolina Children’s Hospital in Chapel Hill, it will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 7 at 7 p.m. ET.

The second webinar, “Hidden Latex Allergy Dangers in Food Service,” will look at the specific problems of latex in restaurants and other food settings, including cross-reactivity with some foods. Presented by Michael Zacharisen, MD, board-certified allergist at Family Allergy & Asthma Care of Montana and Anaphylaxis Community Expert (ACE) volunteer in Bozeman, Montana, it will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 8 at 7 p.m. ET.

“Participants will be surprised by some of the dangers and encouraged by the progress that has been made in this area,” Dr. Zacharisen says. Both webinars will appeal to listeners across the spectrum of care, especially those with life-threatening latex allergies, their family and friends, as well as restaurant, hotel, grocery and food service staff.

To participate in these webinars, please register in advance at:


The “2014 Latex Allergy Awareness Week” Webinar Series, a joint project of Allergy & Asthma Network and the American Latex Allergy Association, is sponsored by Mylan Specialty L.P.

About Allergy & Asthma Network

Allergy & Asthma Network is the leading national nonprofit organization dedicated to ending needless death and suffering due to asthma, allergies and related conditions. Allergy & Asthma Network specializes in sharing family-friendly, medically accurate information through its award-winning publication Allergy & Asthma Today magazine, E-newsletter, website at and numerous community outreach programs. Follow Allergy & Asthma Network on Facebook at and on Twitter at Join Allergy & Asthma Network at

About ALAA

The American Latex Allergy Association is a national nonprofit 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization whose mission is to create awareness of latex allergy through education and provide support to individuals who have been diagnosed with latex allergy. ALAA has an extensive educational website: Follow ALAA on Facebook at American Latex Allergy Association (ALAA) and on Twitter at

About ACE

The Anaphylaxis Community Experts (ACE) program is developed by Allergy & Asthma Network in partnership with the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (ACAAI), National Association of School Nurses and American School Health Association and sponsored by Mylan Specialty L.P. The program goal is to save lives through showing parents, school staff, emergency responders, and others how to recognize and respond immediately to anaphylaxis symptoms. 

To learn more about the ACE program or request an ACE team presentation, email Brenda Silvia-Torma, ACE Program Manager at

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