Improving care for children with asthma in Merton
Twelve children and young people die from asthma each year in London
Three children in every classroom in Merton have asthma – more than 200,000 children and young people in total across London – with twelve children and young people dying as a result of asthma attacks each year in the capital.
Nurse Fiona White said that while Merton CCG's work in reiterating the potential seriousness of asthma was the best it's ever been, there was still much to be done to ensure local people were fully aware of the need to take adequate precautions and also be aware of when to escalate a situation to a health professional.
"Asthma can have a major impact on a child's life, time spent off school can affect their learning while time spent in hospital can be distressing to both children and their families," she said.
"The symptoms can be very upsetting for children and their families and parents also often have to take time off from work if their child's asthma gets worse."
"Asthma can also be deadly so although it is the most common childhood illness it isn't trivial and needs to be taken seriously.
"Small changes to asthma care can make a big difference and Merton CCG aims to support all those who care for children with asthma to make the changes that can improve care."
Less than 52 per cent of children and young people with asthma in London have an asthma management plan, even though a child with a plan is four times less likely to be admitted to hospital. There are a high rate of admissions to hospital of children and young people as a result of asthma – of which 70% are preventable.
For more information about asthma there is a range of resources available including: