LOUISVILLE, Ky. — One of the new laws approved during Kentucky's General Assembly 2021 session will include an addition that could potentially save someone's life.
What You Need To Know
- Senate Bill 127 encourages Kentucky schools to keep bronchodilator rescue inhalers in at least two locations
- The law will also require schools with inhalers to have policies in place regarding their use
- New laws take effect 90 days after the adjournment of the legislature unless they have a special effective date
- The new state laws will go into effect on June 29
According to Lisa Houle, director of respiratory care at Baptist health LaGrange, three out of every 30 kids in a classroom will have asthma.
"Of those kids, 44% of them will have some asthma attack throughout the calendar year," Houle said. "That doesn't mean it will happen in school but it does mean it will happen.”
Wyatt Boucher has been diagnosed with asthma since age 3. Now, the 9 year old has been using a rescue inhaler to treat his asthma symptoms and attacks.
Rebbeca Boucher, a parent of a child with asthma, believes the device will give parents a peace of mind.
“[The device] allows the child to stop wheezing, to open up their airway, it allows parents a peace of mind that the child can breathe easier," Boucher said. "I mean, we've been in peoples homes and sometimes they have allergens in the home we hadn't thought about that will trigger some breathing issues. Sometimes stores will have a certain scent or smell or just something in the air that will irritate them."
A new law passed earlier this year will encourage Kentucky schools to keep bronchodilator rescue inhalers in at least two locations.
“A quick acting medication that relaxes the smooth muscles in the patient's airway makes it easier to get air in and out. So when you're in an asthma attack or somebody that has COPD, this will relax those muscles making that air movement better and relieving those symptoms of having that attack,” Houle said.
It's an addition that could potentially save not only a students life, but also a teacher’s. That's why the Boucher family is in full support of the new change.
“It can be administered by a nurse who probably knows more on how to use an inhaler than, let’s say, someone like myself who is not asthmatic. Then also to just have on hand, to just open up the child’s airway especially some of these really remote schools, if you live pretty far out it may be a minute before someone can get there that could assist,” Boucher said.
The law will also require schools with inhalers to have policies in place regarding their use.
“It’s important that everybody understands that lung disease and asthma is life-threatening and we need to care for those patients just as we would for anybody that has a chronic illness,” Houle said.
The new state laws including Senate Bill 127 will go into effect on June 29.