Can I get allergy shots at CHWS?
CHWS will provide ongoing allergy immunotherapy for students who have been receiving this treatment prior to their arrival on campus. CHWS cannot provide initial allergy assessments, but we can help you find an allergist in Tacoma.
Students who have established care with an allergy specialist and are receiving initial or ongoing allergen immunotherapy (desensitization allergy shots/ injections) from those providers may request a transfer of immunotherapy care to CHWS during the regular academic year (Fall and Spring semesters.) This service is not provided during winter and summer breaks, and other periods when CHWS is closed for clinical services.
Students must make this request to their allergist/allergy clinic who will then be responsible for arranging the transport of the antigen vials, with orders and instructions, and any shot record or other clinic-specific forms. The paperwork can be either included in the shipment of the antigen vials, or faxed or mailed separately to CHWS.
How do I get started with allergy shots at CHWS?
Once the antigens and paperwork has been received, the student may schedule their first allergy shot appointment with the RN in CHWS. Incoming Fall semester students may call CHWS on or after the first day of school to schedule the initial allergy shot appointment with the RN.
The initial visit is a 40-minute appointment and includes injections. At the initial visit, the RN will review the patient’s allergy history, their immunotherapy response and experience of any reactions, and go over the expectations for a typical visit and for scheduling timelines based on their allergist’s orders. The patient will read and sign CHWS’ Authorization for the Administration of Desensitizing Injections and Antigen Transport Policy for Allergy Desensitization Patients forms.
Subsequent visits are 20- minute appointments. A 30-minute post-injection observation period, where the patient is seated in the waiting room and does not leave the clinic for any reason, is mandatory. If they need to use the restroom during that time, they must use the clinic’s patient restroom and not the restrooms across the hall.
How do I ship my antigens to CHWS?
Most antigens require refrigeration to preserve efficacy. It is recommended that they are shipped from the allergy clinic overnight in an insulated container with cold-packs, but not frozen. The package should be marked, “Perishable” and timed to arrive M-F and before the weekend or any holiday when CHWS is closed. The mailroom will notify CHWS of the arrival of a perishable package, and CHWS personnel will pick up the package from the mailroom and place it on the lab counter for lab personnel to unpack. The vials are to be put in the lab refrigerator.
If the allergy clinic has arranged for the student to take possession of the antigen for transport, the student is responsible for keeping the vials at the desired transport temperature until they can bring them to CHWS for storage in the lab refrigerator.
CHWS shipping address is:
1500 N. Warner St. #1035
Tacoma, WA 98416-1035
Students who want to transfer their antigens back to their allergy provider during academic breaks, or for any other reason, must take possession of the vials and arrange their own shipping. If they are unable to do so, and the student agrees to have the costs billed to their student account, CHWS will arrange shipping. A form explaining this policy is to have been signed at the initial immunotherapy visit.
The RN will only administer allergy shots when an advanced practice provider (APP) is present in the office. The APP will be prepared to administer epinephrine in the event of an anaphylactic reaction. The appropriate emergency response will be started if epinephrine is administered.