Smoking laws cuts hospital admissions in asthma kids

This is according to researchers who studied children’€™s hospitalisation rates for asthma after the implementation of smoke-free legislation in July 2007.

They found that the hospital admission rate for asthma decreased by 8.9 percent in the period immediately following implementation of the smoke-free law.T he hospital admissions continued to decrease each year by 3.4 percent – equal to 6 802 fewer hospitalisations within the first three years following implementation.

‘€œBefore the implementation of the legislation, the admission rate for childhood asthma was increasing by 2.2 percent per year. After implementation of the legislation, there was a significant immediate change in the admission rate,’€ the researchers from the School of Public Health at Imperial College, London and Centre for Tobacco Control Research and Education at the University of California in the US, wrote.

The researchers studied a report of all the emergency hospital admissions for childhood asthma in the United Kingdom between April 2002 and November 2010.   In the 8.5-year study period, there were 217  381 hospital admissions for childhood asthma.

The findings, published in the journal Pediatrics, are consistent with those from previous studies conducted in the United Kingdom and North America.

‘€œThe decline in asthma admissions identified in this and previous studies are likely due to reductions in secondhand-smoke exposure among children in their homes associated with the introduction of smoke-free legislation,’€ wrote the authors.

‘€œThese findings confirm that the well-documented population health benefits of comprehensive smoke-free legislation appear to extend to reducing hospital admissions for childhood asthma,’€ the researchers concluded. ‘€“ Health-e News Service

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  • Health-e News

    Health-e News is South Africa's dedicated health news service and home to OurHealth citizen journalism. Follow us on Twitter @HealtheNews

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