New Grant Helping With Asthma Emergencies In Oklahoma Schools

Sunday, November 27th 2022, 10:24 pm


An Oklahoma family started a foundation in 2017 to celebrate the life of Brendon McLarty, a 16-year-old boy who suffered a fatal asthma attack. The group works to educate people on the importance of asthma.

SSM Health St. Anthony is partnering with the Brendon McLarty Memorial Foundation. With the hospital's help, they hope to provide emergency inhalers in every school district in Oklahoma.

A check for more than $190,000 is going towards saving the lives of Oklahoma public school children suffering asthma emergencies. Jennifer Blair said it's the perfect way to honor her nephew who died of an asthma attack.

“It's just surreal you know we had this dream to do something to remember Brenden and to actually do something this big it's just hard to even put it into words,” Blair said.

This check will help put emergency inhalers in every school district.

“It allows them to get back to class, kids aren't missing school, they can use the inhaler and return to class and parents are having to leave work and all of those things,” Blair said.

Blair said Oklahoma is the first state to implement something like this. Right now, inhalers are in 85 Oklahoma School Districts; soon they will be able to expand to more than 500.

“Between one in ten, one in eleven kids across the country who have asthma are diagnosed with asthma. In Oklahoma, that estimate is somewhere between one in eight and one in nine, so we're more common than the rest of the country,” Greg Blair said.

Guthrie Public Schools said they got behind the idea a couple of years. He encourages other districts to jump on board because it is necessary.

“According to the McLarty Foundation, we have administered 35 times the medication to our students. That otherwise did not have their medication on their person. If it can save one kid it's worth all of the work we put into it,” Dr. Mike Simpson said.

The plan is to have school staff trained on how to administer the rescue inhalers by next Fall.


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