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A Breath of Fresh Care

For decades, the inhaler was hailed as the asthma treatment. Today, patients and providers have more options. 

As J. Allen Meadows, MD, explains in “A Breath of Fresh Care,” new asthma treatments can have a revolutionary impact – as long as they’re accessible to patients.

More Options, More Relief 

Innovation and scientific advancements have expanded asthma patients’ treatment options in several ways:  

  • Treatment plans have become more specific thanks to diagnostics and specialty care.  
  • Biomarker testing can help patients identify which type of asthma they have, allowing them to receive targeted treatments and experience better health outcomes. 
  • Biologics can offer patients options beyond the traditional inhaler to help them manage their symptoms and improve their quality of life. 

Overcoming Access Hurdles 

Hurdles can get between patients and the right treatment. 

Some access challenges include: 

  • Pharmacy benefit managers. These organizations negotiate to determine which medications are included in a health plan’s formulary, and they often do so based upon their own financial gain rather than patients’ best interests. 
  • Utilization management. Tactics like prior authorization can increase requests for medical records, ultimately leading to a delay or denial of care. 
  • Cost sharing. These programs often place a heavy financial burden on patients, shifting fiscal challenges onto them. 
  • Value considerations. Discussions on medications’ value often exclude patients’ values, relying on population-level data and using discriminatory metrics. 

These challenges can be serious. But advocates can work with policymakers to ensure policies put patients first. 

Learn more about innovative treatment options and patient-centered asthma care in “A Breath of Fresh Care.”

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