Intended for healthcare professionals


Asthma drugs: industry and government look for greener methods of delivery

BMJ 2019; 365 doi: (Published 07 June 2019) Cite this as: BMJ 2019;365:l4135
  1. Lynn Eaton
  1. London

The UK government is working with the pharmaceutical industry to find new methods for delivering asthma drugs because of concerns over the effects of many commonly used inhalers on the climate.

Doctors have already been urged by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)1 to discuss with patients the type of asthma inhaler prescribed and other alternatives less damaging to the climate.

NICE’s patient decision aid says, “Where several inhalers could be viable options, patients can opt for the more environmentally friendly option, which may help to cut the health service’s carbon footprint.”

The most commonly used type, the metered dose inhaler, contains hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), powerful greenhouse gases, whereas …

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