Asthma Medications in Schools Prevents Children From Being Sent Home or to the ED Interview with:

Manoj Warrier, M.D. Allergy, Asthma & Sinus Care Center Adjunct Associate Professor of Pediatrics Saint Louis University and Cardinal Glennon Children's Medical Center St. Louis, MO 63127

Dr. Manoj Warrier

Manoj Warrier, M.D.
Allergy, Asthma & Sinus Care Center
Adjunct Associate Professor of Pediatrics
Saint Louis University and Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center
St. Louis, MO 63127 What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: In 2012, Missouri House Bill 1188 was passed, which allowed trained employees in Missouri schools to administer asthma related rescue medications at their discretion to students experiencing an asthma exacerbation, even if the individual student did not have their own supply of the medication.

The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America St. Louis Chapter (AAFA-STL) was instrumental in facilitating passage of this bill and also created the RESCUE (Resources for Every School Confronting Unexpected Emergencies) program, which provides equipment and access to free medications to treat acute asthma symptoms, mainly supporting schools with lower income populations. AAFA-STL tracked how often RESCUE supplies were used and found that equipment was used 1357 individual times in 2013-2014 school year, with students going back to class 86.07%, sent home 10.83%, and sent to emergency department (ED) only 1.33% of the time. In the 2014-2015, they found similar results with equipment used 1720 individual times, with students going back to class 84.48%, sent home 10.81%, and sent to ED 3.14% of the time. What should readers take away from your report?

Response: Access to asthma medications in schools prevents children from being sent home or to the ED. All states should consider passing legislation enabling trained school personnel to treat acute asthma exacerbations and support the development of programs modeled on the RESCUE program created by AAFA-STL to keep children in schools rather than sending them home or to the ED. This can significantly decrease economic costs to society and improve student health and academic performance, especially in schools serving lower income populations. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: We recommend that all schools have the resources to both treat acute asthma episodes and track the health outcomes. AAFA-STL proposes taking the RESCUE program to a national level. This will help states and local communities throughout the country have a more detailed understanding of and lead to a reduction of the negative economic impact of pediatric asthma. Is there anything else you would like to add?

Response: AAFA-STL also facilitated the passage of the first state legislation to allow Medicaid reimbursement for asthma education and healthy home assessments, which will further help improve outcomes and decrease the economic burden associated with asthma in children. Thank you for your contribution to the community.

Citation: Abstract presented at the 2016 Annual Scientific Meeting of the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology

State-wide Legislation Positively Impacts Attendance for Students With Asthma
Joy Krieger, Reagan Nelson, Emily Vandas, Hamsa Subramanian, Hua Pan, Manoj Warrier

Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.

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Last Updated on November 14, 2016 by Marie Benz MD FAAD