Rotherham schools rally behind asthma friendly initiative

In commemoration of World Asthma Day, we are celebrating the support offered to asthmatic children across the borough as a remarkable 25% of schools across Rotherham have now embraced the Asthma Friendly Schools initiative.

Amy Shaw (Assistant Headteacher  at Wath Central Primary) and Hannah Lee (Asthma Specialist Nurse) holding the school's Asthma Friendly initiative accreditation certificate.

Driven by Children’s Asthma Specialist Nurses in South Yorkshire, this regional programme aims to empower school staff to effectively assist asthmatic children during school hours.

The initiative, which has garnered participation from 31 schools since its launch, underscores a commitment to ensuring a safe and supportive environment for children living with asthma. Notably, 25 schools are actively progressing towards accreditation, with six already achieving Asthma Friendly status.

“Asthma is the most common long-term condition affecting children in the UK, with 1 in 11 children grappling with its challenges,” says Dr Jo Beahan, Medical Director at The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust. “Recognising the crucial roles play in managing asthma, our initiative equips school staff with the necessary training and resources to effectively support these children.”

To attain Asthma Friendly status, schools must implement an asthma policy, maintain an asthma register, and ensure the availability of emergency salbutamol inhalers. Additionally, 80 – 85% of staff are required to complete an NHS England asthma training programme.

On this World Asthma Day, the Asthma Friendly Schools initiative underscores a collective commitment in providing support for children with asthma, emphasising the importance of preparedness and effective management within school settings to avoid unnecessary trips to their GP or hospital visits.