The government has announced plans to hold a consultation on a ban of emergency inhalers in schools will be lifted in a move that Asthma UK says will "help save many children’s lives".
An All-Party Parliamentary Group on Asthma has laid out plans to hold a public consultation on the recommendation that schools should be allowed to keep a spare inhaler and spacer device for emergencies when children don’t have their own inhaler.
Kay Boycott, Chief Executive of Asthma UK said: "Tragically, children have died from asthma attacks in school, so it’s absolutely vital that schools have access to an emergency reliever inhaler if a child is having an asthma attack.
"This announcement represents a long-overdue step towards ensuring more young lives are not put at risk. But the fight is not over yet; unless people with asthma make their voices heard on this issue, it could still be many years before we see spare inhalers being available to children at school, if at all."
Almost two thirds of children with asthma have had an asthma attack when they have been at school, and 64% of children with asthma have at some point been unable to access a working reliever inhaler in school, having either forgotten, lost, broken or run out of their own.
Legalisation of inhaler kits will mean an exemption to the regulations will be put in place which will allow schools across the UK to supply bronchodilators to children who have asthma. Similar exemptions already exist for organisations like the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) and the armed forces.
There are 1.1 million children in the UK with asthma, that’s roughly two in every classroom. Every day there are 84 children under the age of 15 who are admitted to hospital for emergency treatment for asthma.
Visit www.asthma.org.uk/schoolinhalers to pledge your support for a change in the law.