College students urged to manage asthma properly

Good management key due to COVID
  • Deborah Condon

Students with asthma, who are due to start or return to college, are being urged to properly manage their condition amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the Asthma Society of Ireland (ASI), while starting college is an exciting time, it may be "daunting" for those with asthma, as a result of the virus.

"For many starting college, they will be solely in charge of managing their condition for the first time. In light of COVID-19, asthma management is now more important than ever. We are urging young people to take steps to not only manage their condition, but also to remain vigilant, and continue to follow HSE advice," commented Emily Blennerhassett, interim CEO of the ASI.

She reminded students that the best way to protect their health is to take their medication as prescribed, and to complete an Asthma Action Plan. This can be done with a healthcare professional, such as a GP, or with the ASI's national helpline or WhatsApp messaging service.

"We want to remove the cost barrier to asthma care and management. Our free asthma and COPD WhatsApp messaging service is perfect for young people seeking information from a healthcare professional about their asthma.

"It gives them the opportunity to take charge of their condition through the convenience of a WhatsApp message," Ms Blennerhassett pointed out.

In order to highlight these issues and offer more support to students starting college, the ASI will host an Instagram live on Wednesday, September 30, at 4pm on @AsthmaSocietyofIreland.

This event will be led by respiratory specialist nurse, Ruth Morrow. It will give young people the opportunity to familiarise themselves with the basics of asthma management, to focus on the importance of taking asthma medication as prescribed, and the importance of having an Asthma Action Plan in place.

Meanwhile, the ASI's WhatsApp messaging service can be reached at 086 059 0132. The asthma (and COPD) national helpline can be reached at 1800 44 54 64.

For more information on the ASI, click here.


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