President of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of West Africa (AAFWA) Sheku Wai has said that one their major objectives is to help asthma patients cope with safety regulations put in place as part of efforts to combat the Covid-19 pandemic.
He made these remarks last Friday at his office in Latrikunda Sabiji. He lamented that asthma patients are among the most hard-hit by the Covid-19 regulations, which among other things, require that people wear face masks. He said this affects asthma patients, especially those with the severe strain of the disease.
Asthma is a lung disease characterised by breathing difficulties, and he explained that some people with asthma may experience discomfort or have trouble breathing while wearing a face mask.
“People with very severe disease and have frequent exacerbations, hospitalisations, require a lot of medications and frequent symptoms, and wearing a face mask might cause more issues for them”, he also said.
He advised asthmatics not to use masks that are made of fabric or masks that makes it hard for them to breathe. He also advised those unable to wear a mask because of severe asthma or breathing distress, to protect themselves from COVID-19 in other ways such as staying home as much as possible, asking others to run errands or shop for them, keep a physical distance of about six feet from others when in public, avoid crowds as much as possible as well as avoid unnecessary travels.
Wai disclosed that AAFWA plans to mobilize asthma and allergy patients in The Gambia to join the rest of the World in observing World Asthma Day in May, a key component being to help members live through the challenge of Covid-19.