An EpiPen [link] is a device for injection of epinephrine, used to treat people who go into anaphylactic shock. This condition can be triggered after consuming food or beverages to which one is severely allergic.
In some states in the United States and in some countries including at least parts of Canada, restaurants can purchase this brand (or other brands) of pens in case a customer (or employee) has an allergic reaction onsite.
There are several points to consider about stocking EpiPens - the potential benefits to customer and employee safety, versus a potential problems in using an expired one, using one incorrectly, or using one on a person who does not actually require it. Stocking the pens on site would likely imply that staff are trained regularly in how to properly use the pens in case of an emergency.
Some of these issues are addressed in the following articles:
- "Why the food industry is wary of requiring EpiPens in every restaurant" GlobalNews.ca [link]
- "Stocking EpiPens at restaurants might reduce fatal allergic reactions" Reuters [link]
- "New California Law Allows Organizations to Buy EpiPens For Emergencies, But Will They?" California Healthline [link]
- "Should restaurants keep an EpiPen on hand?" Restaurant Hospitality [link]