Staff Report (Adapted form The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America)
Direct and immediate access to medications containing pseudoephedrine (PSE) — used to relieve common symptoms of cold, cough and allergy — continues to be important to patients. The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) today announced results from a five-state survey, which highlights that cold, cough and allergy sufferers rely on — and demand access to — these medicines.
The survey, conducted online for AAFA by Harris Poll January 14- 26, 2015, included 2,027 users of non-prescription medicine used to treat nasal allergies, asthma and/or cold, cough or flu in Illinois, Indiana, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Missouri. The survey provides insight about patients’ behaviors regarding medication use and choice, as well as their attitudes regarding access and availability of safe and effective treatments.
Across the five states, the survey found that among those using non-prescription medications to treat one or more condition:
* Ninety-eight percent who experienced cold, cough and flu symptoms, and 88 percent of those living with nasal allergies, purchase non-prescription medication to treat their ailments.
* Sixty-five percent of those experiencing cold, cough, flu symptoms or nasal allergies would choose a decongestant based on a trusted brand that has previously worked for them rather than the one with the lower price.
* Ninety-two percent of those experiencing cold, cough, flu symptoms or nasal allergies feel it is important that their full-service pharmacy offer all of the safe and effective medications available on the market, including 84 percent who say a full spectrum of medications available is important even if they are not currently using them.
* Seventy-one percent of those experiencing cold, cough, flu symptoms or nasal allergies say that they somewhat or very unfavorably view pharmacies that remove medications containing PSE.
* Seventy percent of those experiencing cold, cough, flu symptoms or nasal allergies say that they somewhat or very unfavorably view grocery stores that remove medications containing PSE.
* Eighty percent of those experiencing cold, cough, flu symptoms or nasal allergies say that they would feel somewhat or very unfavorably if they need to travel to more than one retail location to purchase all of the medications they need for themselves or their family.
“The survey results are evidence that patients who need access to these medicines feel very strongly about access,” said Meryl Bloomrosen, AAFA’s Senior Vice President of Advocacy, Policy and Research.
“A few states and localities have taken steps to impede people suffering from cough, cold and allergies from easily accessing the safe and effective FDA-approved therapies they rely on, and these places are greatly inconveniencing consumers. Patients and caregivers prefer to get medication for themselves and their families all at one store, and they deserve that right to access.”
To learn more about this study, and AAFA’s position on medications containing PSE, visit www.aafa.org/PSE.
About the Research: This study was conducted by Harris Poll on behalf of AAFA and included 2,027 American adults aged 18 or older residing in Illinois, Indiana, Tennessee, Oklahoma, or Missouri and suffered from nasal allergies, asthma, and/or cold, cough or flu symptoms in the past year; and use at least non-prescription medication to treat symptoms related to their nasal allergies, asthma, and/or cold, cough or flu, who participated in an online survey between January 14 and January 26, 2015. Results were weighted to Census targets for education, age/gender, race/ethnicity, region and household income. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online. No estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated; a full methodology is available.
About AAFA: The Asthma and Allergy Fondation of America (AAFA), founded in 1953, not-for-profit national voluntary health association dedicated to improving the quality of life for people with asthma and allergic diseases and their families and caregivers, through education, advocacy and research. AAFA provides free information to the public, offers educational programs to consumers and health professionals, leads advocacy efforts to improve patient care, and funds research to find treatments and cures. This essay first appeared at PR Newswire.