Asthma is a significant health concern in the United States, with 6.3 million children diagnosed with the condition, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It is also a leading cause of school absenteeism, accounting for a total of 13.8 million school days per year.
"Asthma flares should be treated at the first sign of symptoms – any delay increases the risk for hospitalization," Winders says. "By ensuring schools have emergency supplies of stock albuterol on site, we can keep all children with asthma safe."
Pending legislation in Congress – the School-Based Asthma Management Program Act (H.R. 4662), introduced by U.S. Reps. Phil Roe (R-TN) and Steny Hoyer (D-MD) – would give federal funding preference to states that encourage schools to stock albuterol inhalers. The bill would also allow trained school personnel to administer the inhaler when necessary, and implement school-based asthma management programs to ensure a safe and healthy learning environment for children with asthma.
"Immediate access to emergency asthma medications is critical for schoolchildren with asthma," says Charmayne Anderson, Director of Advocacy for Allergy & Asthma Network. "We encourage patients, families and school officials to contact their representatives in Congress and urge them to support H.R. 4662." Visit AllergyAsthmaNetwork.org/advocacy to contact your representatives.
The School-Based Asthma Management Program Act follows in the footsteps of the School Access to Emergency Epinephrine Act of 2013, which gave federal funding preference to states that allowed or required schools to stock emergency epinephrine auto-injectors for treatment of life-threatening allergic reactions, or anaphylaxis. Forty-nine states now have stock epinephrine laws or regulations.
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Contact: Gary Fitzgerald
Allergy & Asthma Network
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SOURCE Allergy & Asthma Network