Evidence that free asthma prescriptions in Scotland may have saved thousands from a Covid death

Yesterday, 23 December 2022, I posted:

On 21 December 2022, there were only 8 patients in ICU in Scotland but 174 in England, nearly twice as many per head of population. Even in Wales with a smaller population, there were more, 10.

Throughout November and December as Covid hospitalisations began to climb again, there have been 2 to 3 times as many, pro rata, in English Hospitals than in Scotland.

I wondered why this might be and Lorna Murray [https://twitter.com/LornaRetiree] tweeted:

People in England are unable to pay for drugs such as ventolin for asthma therefore are hospitalised as a result

I was intrigued and did a quick search for evidence either way. No research group seems to have done this and I offer my hypothesis below ready to be contradicted with better evidence but:

People with moderate-to-severe or uncontrolled asthma are more likely to be hospitalized from COVID-19.

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/need-extra-precautions/asthma.html

People with mild and/or well-controlled asthma are neither at significantly increased risk of hospitalisation with nor more likely to die from COVID-19 than adults without asthma.

https://thorax.bmj.com/content/early/2022/03/29/thoraxjnl-2021-218629

I think its reasonable to interpret ‘well-controlled‘ as involving medication.

Can everyone afford to be medicated adequately?

Essential medicines for treating asthma and COPD were largely unavailable and unaffordable in LMICs [low-income and middle-income countries]. This was particularly true for inhalers containing corticosteroids.

https://www.thelancet.com/journals/langlo/article/PIIS2214-109X(22)00330-8/fulltext

The Covid death rate in Scotland is 226.8 per 100 000. In England, it is 310.9, 37% higher in a country with a generally higher life expectancy.

There have been 12 389 Covid deaths in Scotland and 175 007 in England, around 45 890 more per head of population.

Around 5.4 million in the UK have asthma.

So:

  1. Have free asthma prescriptions in Scotland played a major part in saving 4 589 (37%) from Covid deaths?
  2. Has a lack of free asthma prescriptions for the poor in England, played a major part in tens of thousands of avoidable Covid deaths?

Other sources:

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6 thoughts on “Evidence that free asthma prescriptions in Scotland may have saved thousands from a Covid death

  1. Alas, within the daily gaslighting of auld Scotia by our colonial/imperial mejah!, there is no place for actual news.

    “Mr Reasonable”, the miniman Rish! Sunak, thinks a thousand year old legal system can just be swept aside by the 28year old Scotland Act—-because the YUK (England) doesn’t “like it up ’em”.

    Kimi BOGOF is stamping her little feet and crying “I’ll scweam and I’ll scweam” if her Swengali –dancing Queen Govey doesnt help her!

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  2. Well done I think you are correct my wife has asthma well controlled with two different inhalers free on nhs Scotland prescription.I remember when prescriptions were not free in Scotland and remember those days back then seeing my wife in severe difficulty because she didn’t renew her inhalers timeously , took a chance and regretted doing so.

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  3. The timeframe for overall statistics. It still has not been established how many people who died of covid would have died of other causes. The yearly data. There has not been a sufficient time lapse to establish an overtime % for comparison.

    50,000 people die in Scotland each year on average, after a long life. Women on average outlive men by 5 years on average. Highest life expectancy Japan 85. Spain 84. US 76 years.

    People might have died of covid who might have still died of other causes. Overall. The elderly men over seventy with underling health conditions.

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  4. Average life expectancy in Scotland. 77 for men. 81 years for women. On average. Life expectancy will rise because of improved healthcare provisions. People are smoking and drinking less. Average going down. Obesity is on the rise overall. Improved diet and less sugar and salt in process good. Improves diet. People’s health and length of life is affected by the health of the mother on conceiving. Good food and nourishment. The healthiest time for both men and women to conceive is between 18-24. Biologically. Older parenthood conceives more risks for the mother and the baby. 0-2 is the most important time for human development. Followed by teenage development. The most rapid for the human body. Swift and important changes overall in human development. Mothers and children need important support. For a more successfulsociety.

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