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St. Louis researchers receive thousands in federal funds to study asthma

By Catherine Wolf, KWMU

St. Louis, MO –

Local researchers will receive the majority of $700,000 in federal funds to study and treat children's asthma.

The St. Louis Regional Asthma Consortium is a collaboration of doctors, clinics and asthma organizations. The group studies why children from low-income families get asthma.

Consortium President Dr. William Kincaid says the federal money will go to educate doctors and school nurses, and to provide medication for children.

"We also make sure if the kids need any other equipment like if they're allergic to dust or dander, which may be in a pillow, we can put a cover on that pillow and make sure that they don't get exposed."

Republican Senator Kit Bond, who suffers from asthma, met with the group on Monday. He says he hopes the money also will be used to collect more data and to reduce school absentee rates.

"To deal with the causes of asthma if they can ascertain them and also deal with the treatment so students don't miss school, so students can get a good night's sleep."

Consortium members say at some St. Louis city schools as many as 25% of students miss school due to asthma.

In January, the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America named St. Louis the most challenging place to live with asthma in the U.S.