Society calls for asthma to be included in Long Term Illness Scheme

The Asthma Society of Ireland is calling on the health minister to take meaningful actions to help the more than 14,000 people living with asthma in Kerry in Budget 2016. Doctor 92 per cent of the society’s members nationwide want to see asthma included in the Long Term Illness Scheme. Among its budget priorities is to stop unnecessary asthma deaths, reduce the cost of living with asthma and to fund the Asthma Society of Ireland Adviceline. The society says as the most common chronic disease in Ireland, asthma has a massive impact on our health. Asthma also has a hugely negative financial impact; both on people’s monthly outgoings and on the State’s finances, costing the Irish economy more than half a billion Euro per annum. A survey in June found that 40% of the Asthma Society members spend between €100-144 on their medication each month, with 27% spending more than €400 per year in visits to their GP. They say with many households having multiple asthma sufferers, it is placing an insurmountable pressure on Irish families.