31 Jul 2012

Asthma Foundation welcomes option for wheezy children

6:21 pm on 31 July 2012

The Asthma Foundation says a new treatment will be a valuable extra option for preschoolers with recurrent wheezing.

The drug-buying agency Pharmac says from Wednesday it will fund a pill or tablet known as Montelukast for children under five with recurrent wheezing, people with exercise-induced asthma, and those undergoing aspirin desensitisation programmes.

While inhalers will remain the standard treatment, the new treatment will offer an alternative for those who need it.

Asthma Foundation medical director Bob Hancox says parents have wanted Montelukast funded for some time.

A specialist in respiratory issues and children's health says it's about time the new medication was funded.

Auckland specialist Innes Asher says some parents have been paying about $100 a month for the medicine.