NEIL Hamilton, MS for Mid & West Wales, and Leader of UKIP Wales is backing a call for better basic asthma care in Wales.
Mr Hamilton, a member of the Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs committee, is supporting the Asthma UK and British Lung Foundation Partnership who are calling for improvements.
“Asthma is a distressing condition which can affect 1 in 10 people in Wales regardless of age so it is disappointing to see we are falling short on our basic care provision for those who suffer.
“Figures in the Annual Asthma Survey Report 2019 show that, although we are not the lowest in the UK, we are a long way behind Northern Ireland which has the best asthma care in the UK.
“We also have the lowest percentage, just 47%, in the whole of the UK for providing written asthma action plans for our respondents.
“Both matters need addressing and I plan to raise the matters in the Senedd in the near future.
Asthma affects the lives of 5.4 million people across the UK and every year, Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation Partnership run an Annual Survey to find out the experiences of people living with asthma and what care they receive.
The number receiving basic care for asthma has doubled since 2013, but still three out of five are not receiving the basic asthma care they need to stay out of hospital and get on with their lives.
The survey shows the drastic difference in the level of basic care between the nations. Although a good news story that Wales has improved the level of basic care over the last two years, it is still disappointing to see that 13% less of Welsh respondents are receiving this basic care compared to Northern Ireland.
Although Wales falls short in several categories it scores well for inhaler technique checks, with a strong 79% of respondents receiving the check. Which is higher than any respondents across the regions in England and Scotland.
However, the survey says it is unacceptable that levels of care vary based on where you live and this should not be dependent on your geographical location in the UK.
It also shows how deprived communities suffer from a higher frequency of asthma symptoms compared to more affluent communities.
The UK wide results highlighted that the severity of asthma is linked to household income, the poorer you are, the worse your asthma. This shouldn’t be so and the charity is now calling for better uniformed delivery of basic asthma care across the UK.