Dealing with an asthma attack competently is one way of keeping your life as normal as possible. If the attack is severe, other people may need to do the coping for you. It is well worth talking to friends and relatives about what might happen and how they can help you if you do suffer a bad attack and cannot cope on your own. They can help you use your medication, work the nebuliser, or ask you if you need a doctor or ambulance. Even if you can’t speak you can usually nod or shake your head to communicate your wishes to them. Explain to them about your asthma and the drugs you take. Show them how to use a nebuliser so that they are well prepared and know what to do in the event of a bad attack.
The NAC manifesto also states that in an emergency, you have the right to expect your call for help to be treated as urgent by all health professionals, especially doctors, practice nurses and receptionists. In fact, health professionals do usually take asthma attacks very seriously indeed.
You also have the right to expect a swift response by an ambulance staffed with trained paramedics, and equipped with both oxygen and nebulisers. On arrival in the accident and emergency department, you should be given priority as an urgent case.
If these standards are not met and you live in the UK, then your local community health council can advise you on how to complain about your treatment.