Full-time Workers With Asthma Too Busy To Breathe

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New research out today suggests that busy full time workers with asthma are increasing their risk of an attack by not controlling their condition properly.

New research out today suggests that busy full time workers with asthma are increasing their risk of an attack by not controlling their condition properly.

Lloydspharmacy contacted over 1,000 people with asthma and found that, of those working full time, 38% admitted to not having an asthma check-up as regularly as they should do* and a third (33%) identified stress as one of the main triggers for their attacks, particularly women (43% vs. 25% for men). Compounding the issue, a quarter (25%) said their employer was not supportive about allowing them time off for asthma appointments.

Asthma affects around 5.4 million adults in the UK** and these findings are a stark reminder of how serious this condition is – 31% of those surveyed said they have had to visit A&E as a result of their asthma. And there is also a cost to the economy, with more than one in seven (15%) saying that had taken three days or more off work in the last year as a direct result of their asthma.

The research also showed that among full-time workers:

•50% of women - and 43% of men - admitted to having used an out-of-date inhaler citing ‘lack of time to renew their prescription’ as a key reason for this

•37% had used an inhaler prescribed to someone else.

To enable people with asthma to manage their condition more conveniently, the Lloydspharmacy Online Doctor has launched a new asthma treatment service that allows people to renew their inhaler prescription, without having to visit their GP.

Dr Christina Hennessy, GP and asthma advisor at Lloydspharmacy’s Online Doctor said: “It’s understandable how managing your asthma can be pushed to the bottom of your priority list when you have a hectic work schedule. However we were alarmed to see just how many people admitted to skipping medical appointments, using out-of-date inhalers or simply using someone else’s inhaler. Taking these sorts of risks increases your chance of having a serious asthma attack.

“There is good evidence*** to show that with regular, structured reviews with a healthcare professional, your asthma can be better controlled. Our online service is designed to fit around your life providing convenient access to doctors and medication, so making it easier to take control of your asthma.”

Lloydspharmacy’s new online doctor asthma treatment service is available at: http://www.lloydspharmacy.com/asthma. Prices for a monthly subscription start from £15.50, which includes a private consultation with a doctor and medication.

Notes to editors:

  • Data: 1027 people with asthma were interviewed online by Research Now on 28 and 29 February 2012. Over 370 people with asthma surveyed worked full-time.
  • About the Asthma service: Lloydspharmacy’s Online Doctor service is a new, hassle-free asthma treatment service to help people conveniently manage their asthma from the comfort of their own home – or even their office. The online doctors will assess and monitor a customer’s asthma online but they will also be able to prescribe inhalers remotely. The medicines can then be collected from a local Lloydspharmacy store or posted direct to your door. People can choose a pay-as-you-go option or a monthly subscription (which includes the cost of medicines).
  • About Lloydspharmacy: Lloydspharmacy has over 1600 pharmacies across the UK. These are based predominantly in community and health centre locations. The company employs over 17,000 staff and dispenses over 150 million prescription items annually. The Lloydspharmacy Online Doctor service was launched in August 2008 and is accredited by the Care Quality Commission - http://www.lloydspharmacy.com/doctor

References:

  • Asthma UK recommends that people with asthma have at least an annual check-up

**Asthma UK
*** British Thoracic Society guidelines

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Amy Byard
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