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Pharmacy staff profile

Neera Rajballi-Naidoo

PositionPhD Student
QualificationsBSc (Pharmacy) PGDip (Health Sciences) MSc (HSc)
Research summaryAddressing ways to improve outcomes for children with asthma In New Zealand


Asthma affects 1 in 8 adults and 1 in 7 children in New Zealand; one of the highest rates in the world. It is the most common non-communicable illness among children, but can be well controlled allowing them to enjoy a good of life.

Functioning normally in one’s day to day activities without being restricted by asthma exacerbation is indicative of the disease being well controlled.

Child asthma hospital admission rates have increased sharply, almost 50%, in the last 14 years. These rates are more than twice as high for Maori and more than three times as high for Pacific Islanders than for other ethnicities. They are also twice as high in the poorer communities as opposed to the affluent.


  • Reduce hospitalisation of children due to asthma
  • Reduced avoidable deaths from asthma


  • Promote education and awareness of asthma and proper usage of medicines
  • Enabling pharmacists to improve their role in delivery of services to asthma patients by introducing asthma clinics in pharmacies
  • Allowing asthma trained pharmacist to perform asthma assessments and prescribe appropriate inhalers including corticosteroids
  • Help remove the stigma associated with asthma
  • Improve the accessibility of asthma relieving medicines
  • Increase accessibility of funded flu vaccinations for asthmatic patients

Key approaches

  • Assess the cost and availability of medicine s for asthma in NZ
  • Research of NZ statistics: hospitalisations and death
  • Create a learning programme for pharmacist to train in asthma diagnosis and assessment
  • Create an algorithm for:
    • Pharmacist prescribed ICS and SABA
    • Funded vaccination at pharmacies
  • Work together with the Asthma Foundation of NZ to increase awareness and remove the stigma, e.g. arrange talks at schools and relevant organisations