New report highlights people with asthma getting inadequate treatment
“Millions of people suffer from asthma because they do not get access to the medicines that lessen their breathing difficulties,” says Professor Asher, Chair of the Global Asthma Network.
“Avoidable asthma deaths – about 1000 per day - are still occurring due to inappropriate management of asthma, including over-reliance on reliever medication rather than preventer medication,” says Professor Asher. “Asthma is a particularly serious burden in low- and middle-income countries which are least able to afford the costs.” “Economies suffer because asthma keeps people away from work, or if they are at work, asthma stops them working effectively.” The economic costs of asthma in Europe were 19 billion Euros for 2011.
The Global Asthma Report 2018 is an 88 page report with contributions from 53 experts from around the globe. The report is an update on the state of asthma globally, including research data on asthma hospital admissions, mortality, prevalence, severity, and burden, risk factors and management.
The Forum of International Respiratory Societies (FIRS) is very concerned that in many countries, essential asthma medicines are unavailable, unaffordable, or are of unreliable quality. This needs to be urgently addressed if we are to improve asthma outcomes.
The report also includes several key recommendations to the World Health Organization (WHO), governments, health authorities, health professionals, professional societies and patient organisations.
Political commitment and action are required to make the burden of asthma a thing of the past,” says Professor Asher. “If these recommendations were followed, the serious burden of asthma globally would be reduced.”
The Global Asthma Network was established in 2012 to improve asthma care globally, with a focus on low- and middle-income countries, through enhanced surveillance, research collaboration, capacity building and access to quality-assured essential medicines.
Read the report in full here.
About the Forum of International Respiratory Societies (FIRS)
The Forum of International Respiratory Societies (FIRS) is an organisation comprised of the world's leading international respiratory societies working together to improve lung health globally: American College of Chest Physicians (CHEST), American Thoracic Society (ATS), Asian Pacific Society of Respirology (APSR), Asociación Latino Americana De Tórax (ALAT), European Respiratory Society (ERS), International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Diseases (The Union), Pan African Thoracic Society (PATS), Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA), and the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD).
The goal of FIRS is to unify and enhance efforts to improve lung health through the combined work of its more than 70,000 members globally.