Health and housing partnership tackles asthma symptoms in children

An asthma inhaler - pic by PexelsAn asthma inhaler - pic by Pexels
An asthma inhaler - pic by Pexels
NHS South Yorkshire has partnered with a housing provider to improve the living conditions and health of children with asthma.

Asthma is the most common long-term medical condition in children in the UK, with around one in 11 children and young people living with symptoms including wheezing (a whistling sound when breathing), breathlessness, a tight chest, and coughing.

South Yorkshire Children and Young People’s Alliance have teamed up with Berneslai Homes – the organisation which manages properties for Barnsley Council – to ensure children and young people with asthma who live in a Berneslai Homes property have the best possible health outcomes.

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Respiratory nurses at Barnsley Hospital are working closely with Berneslai Homes to ensure the homes of asthma patients are not making their symptoms worse with issues such as inadequate ventilation and heating leading.

Zena Thomas, children’s respiratory nurse specialist at Barnsley Hospital, said: “When we see children in our asthma clinics, or when they have been admitted to the children’s assessment unit or ward following an asthma attack, we discuss with the family any environmental triggers that could be contributing to the patient’s symptoms.

“These could be issues such as damp and mould in the home.

“We support the family to fill in the Berneslai Homes ‘Healthy Homes’ checklist which helps identify any issues in the home that could maybe make respiratory symptoms worse.

“Our new partnership also allows us to liaise with the service managers at Berneslai Homes directly, to help resolve specific issues in the home that are likely having a negative effect on the child’s respiratory health.”

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Dave Fullen, executive director of customer and estate services from Berneslai Homes added: "The right home environment is critical to good physical health and wellbeing.

“Good quality, safe housing helps everyone stay healthy.

“At Berneslai Homes we are pleased to be working closely with our colleagues at Barnsley Hospital to improve health outcomes for children and families in the homes we manage.”

Although this type of partnership is currently only available in Barnsley, South Yorkshire Children and Young People’s Alliance is hoping to replicate this with the hospitals and housing providers in the other areas across South Yorkshire.

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