THE Balearic Ministry of Health yesterday started the distribution of 30 “exhalation meters”, an apparatus used to detect asthma, to the health centres on the islands so that the diagnosis can be done outside of the hospitals. Balearic Government sources said that this initiative is part of the First Balearic Plan for Infant Asthma. The Balearic Ministry for Health started to apply this plan in September, the objective being to improve the quality of life of asthmatic children and their families. According to the Ministry, it is calculated that some 15'500 youngsters on the islands, up to the age of 14, suffer from asthma, as there are 147'736 children on the islands in this age group and the incidence of asthma in the Balearics is 10.5 percent. The measure is part of an agreement signed with the pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline and 23 of these machines will be distributed on Majorca, three on Minorca, and four on Ibiza and Formentera. Ministry sources explained that “all the health centres on the Balearic islands will have these machines to diagnose asthma, so avoiding the need for the patient to go to the hospital”.


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