Primary & Community Care

Primary and Community care can play an important role in both the original diagnosis and ongoing management of food allergy.

Diagnosis of food allergy is based primarily on a detailed allergy focused clinical history. If the clinical history is highly suggestive of food allergy then avoidance can be advised and any treatment measures initiated even before confirmatory allergy testing is performed. If the history is not indicative of food allergy, then other differentials should be considered including non-allergic urticaria.


Allergy tests in the form of sIgE can be ordered by doctors in primary and community care.

It is recommended that the tests ordered are all relevant to the clinical history. If the history is not suggestive of food allergy, then doctors are cautioned against ordering any allergy tests.

Management Goals

The goals of food allergy management include:

  1. Reducing the severity of allergic reactions
  2. Ensuring optimal quality of life in those with food allergy
  3. Promoting tolerance inducing strategies

Primary care and Community Health Care Professionals can play a central role in achieving these goals by:

  • Encouraging families of infants with  Milk and Egg allergy to start introducing foods along the MAP Milk Ladder and IFAN egg ladder. This will promote tolerance and improve quality of life for the family.
  • Reinforcing the importance of keeping tolerated nuts in the diet of young children as advised by the Allergy Clinic staff.
  • Using every interaction with allergic families as an opportunity to ensure their emergency kit is being carried and that families are confident in anaphylaxis management.
  • Ensuring that co-morbidities are controlled
    Poorly controlled eczema delays progress on MAP Milk and IFAN Egg Ladder.
    Poorly controlled asthma is a risk factor for severe accidental allergic reactions.

Information for GPs

Further information for GPs is available at ICGP – Food Allergy in Children Quick Reference Guide

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