Asthma medication op-ed by Center member

Dr. Tyra Bryant-Stephens

Center member Tyra Bryant-Stephens, along with Chen Kenyon and Bianca Nfonoyim Bernhard wrote an op-ed for Stat News titled, As childhood asthma worsens, insurers restrict access to an essential medication. 

From the article:

As pediatricians who take care of children in the inpatient, emergency, and primary care settings, we are alarmed by the recent trend of families having to go without basic medications to control their child’s asthma. At least seven children have died due to uncontrolled asthma this year in the Philadelphia region, a dramatic increase from prior years. At our institution, admissions for intensive care to support children with asthma have nearly doubled from the pre-pandemic baseline, and admissions for asthma are up 50% in March and April compared to last year.

This increase in child asthma acuity and deaths is likely multifactorial, but access to basic medications is one modifiable driver. Limited access stems from three main issues: the discontinuation of a common branded asthma medication, lack of insurance coverage for its generic alternative, and shortages of a similar branded alternative.

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