Auvi-Q™, the EpiPen™ alternative, is available!
Last night I picked up our first Auvi-Q™. I felt like I had just completed a marathon. I was shaking with excitement and wanted to shout out to the world, "LOOK!" I didn't even make it out of the pharmacy without texting food allergy Moms and crusaders, Tiffany Ferreira and Jami Robinson. I didn't care that people were watching me and giving me odd looks as I took pictures of the Auvi-Q™ and was texting them, while still at the pharmacy’s counter. I can't imagine what it feels like for Eric and Evan Edwards, the twin brothers who jointly founded Intelliject® and developed The Auvi-Q™.
It was quite a journey to obtain the Auvi-Q™ and worth every moment. A U V I - Q….. The new epinephrine auto injector that is the size of your smartphone and talks to you. I consistently repeated “A U V I - Q, the new epinephrine auto injector”, to the pharmacies, allergist’s office, and pediatrician’s offices, when trying to obtain it. I had to remind myself that drugs are released every day and they cannot be aware of every drug released on a daily basis. I have been seeking an Auvi-Q™ Trainer since I had heard about the FDA approval and expected October 2012 release. I was anxious to learn about and blog about it for my kiddo with food allergies, for the food allergy community, and for Allergy Apparel, LLC. I was excited to hear that Eric and Evan's hard work was paying off and that the FDA had approved the Auvi-Q™ and that it was due to release in late 2012. I visited the Sanofi website and signed up to be notified once it was released. (Still waiting on that notification). I called every person, emailed, texted, Facebooked everyone I knew including allergists, pediatricians, Sanofi, Intelliject®, friends and family members that are drug sales representatives….All to obtain a Trainer.
This is an exciting time in the food allergy community and I wanted to share it! When I saw that Grateful Foodie, Caroline, a food allergy mom, blogger, and Allergy Apparel cheerleader, was in transit to a Sanofi expense-paid seminar, along with other food allergy bloggers, I knew it was coming soon and I was excited! Caroline wrote a very thorough review on the Auvi-Q™ and shared pictures on her blog. Her blog only got us more excited about this new epinephrine auto injector, which was expected to be released in the first quarter of 2013.
I'm still frantically trying to get a Trainer….
As I rested my head on my pillow Monday night, I received a Facebook message from Ohio Valley Food Allergy Support Group leader, Jami Robinson, that one of her members had picked up their Auvi-Q™. I was shocked that it was available and giddy with excitement. I revised my Tuesday plan with obtaining my Auvi-Q™ at the top of list.
First call: Target Pharmacy.
Me: “Hi, could you tell me if you have the A U V I - Q's yet; the new epinephrine auto injector that was released yesterday".
Target: “Not in stock:”. They could probably get it for me within 24 hours. I explained that I didn't want to wait and they recommended that I call a 24 hour CVS. I called CVS
Me: "Hi could you tell me if you have the A U V I - Q's yet, the new epinephrine auto injector that was released yesterday." They did not have it in stock and recommended that I call Westbury Pharmacy, a Richmond pharmacy that was established over 50 years ago.
I called and they did not have it available at that time but were able to get it for me by 6pm.
Next item on my list, get a prescription. I had an Auvi-Q™ coupon to apply against the $200-300 cost. Westbury Pharmacy, located at 8903 Three Chopt Rd, Richmond, VA 23229, went above and beyond and kindly accepted my insurance and coupon. (Maybe that’s why they have been in business for over 50 years). My new Auvi-Q™ is in my hands and cost me $40.
I am excited about the Auvi-Q™ for a couple reasons. I love that it gives audible instructions (see video) so when you could potentially be panicked it simply walks you through the steps to inject. It is also a smaller device and I think people will be more likely to wear it than the traditional auto-injectors. And in the end both of these auto injector modifications will save more lives.