Schoolchildren and parents can breathe a little easier after Stevenage MP’s asthma campaign ends in victory

PUBLISHED: 08:35 07 October 2014

Stephen McPartland celebrates asthma campaign victory

Stephen McPartland celebrates asthma campaign victory

Archant

Emergency inhalers can now be held at schools, government agrees

Young asthma sufferers can breathe a little easier after a long-running campaign to allow spare inhalers to be kept in schools managed to change official policy.

Stevenage MP Stephen McPartland, who chairs the all party parliamentary group on respiratory health, launched the campaign soon after winning his seat.

The law prevented schools from keeping inhalers on hand for emergencies because they were classified as prescribed medication.

Mr McPartland said this week: “I am absolutely delighted, and I would like to thank Asthma UK and their supporters who helped make this happen.

“It was completely ridiculous that children’s lives were being out at risk simply because of a technical point of law.

“It has been a four year campaign, but we have won and thousands of children now have access to an emergency inhaler during an asthma attack in school.

“I am very proud that we have made this difference and believe it will help save children’s lives and reduce hospital admissions due to severe asthma attacks.”

Asthma UK chief executive Kay Boycott added: “We are delighted to have secured this vital change in the law to help keep children with asthma safe at school.

“Asthma kills the equivalent of a classroom of children every year in the UK and every day 84 children are admitted to hospital for emergency treatment for asthma.

“The health minister acknowledged that there is overwhelming support for this change, and it will undoubtedly be a huge relief to millions of parents across the UK.”

It’s estimated that as many as 900,000 children will benefit from the rethink.

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