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Preventing out-of-hospital asthma deaths
  1. William F S Sellers
  1. Correspondence to Dr William F S Sellers, Retired Anaesthetist, Broadgate House, Great Easton, Leicestershire LE168SH, UK; wfssellers{at}

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Ten-year-old Cameron Good died from an asthma attack in November 2014; it began during his football match, and news reports highlighted the inability of bystanders to oxygenate before ambulance arrival. Sam Linton died in 2007, Olivia Chandler in 2010, their asthma attacks began at school; the Patient's Association criticised Lauren Hughes’ care,1 and journalist Anthony Shadid's fatal attack was triggered by dander from his horse leading him out of Syria. All parents of the children expressed a wish that something be done to prevent other deaths. Two-thirds of patient deaths from asthma are out of hospital; the UK has the highest incidence of childhood asthma and asthma deaths in Europe2 and possibly the world. Should epinephrine intramuscular auto-injector ‘pens’ be used to treat life-threat asthma, and what other strategies are available?

An All Party Parliamentary Group providing asthma inhalers and training in schools reported in September 2014; inhalers are to be for named use patients only. With greater alacrity and …

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  • Correction notice This article has been corrected since it was published Online First. The provenance and peer review statement has been corrected.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.