Asthma rates higher than ever

Asthma rates in the United States are increasing and are at record levels, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced this week. In fact, 13.6 percent of children and 12.7 percent of adults in the United States have been diagnosed with asthma, according to the report. Meanwhile, more than half of all children with the disease (and more than two-thirds of all adults) do not have an individualized action plan, a major concern for the CDC. An asthma action plan (also known as an asthma management plan) is a written plan that an asthma patient develops with his or her doctor to help control asthma symptoms. The plan also typically includes long-term asthma control strategies.

“A key component for adults and children is to create and follow an asthma action plan,” said Christopher J. Portier, Ph.D., a CDC spokesman for “CDC encourages those with asthma to work with their doctors to take control of this disease.” Many government agencies and health organizations recommend the use of an air purifier as an asthma-control step in addition to seeing a doctor regularly and taking medications as prescribed.

The American Lung Association offers the following asthma- and allergy-control guidance:

  1. Reduce or remove as many asthma allergy triggers from your home as possible.
  2. Usehigh-efficiency air purifiersand air conditioners and keep them in good repair.
  3. Control dust mites, especially in the bedroom.
  4. Contact the American Lung Association for more information.

The CDC announcement in May was timed to coincide with National Asthma Awareness Month. “The information in this release is a stark reminder that asthma continues to be a major public health concern with a large financial impact on families, the nation, and our health care system,” Portier said.

Some additional highlights from the CDC announcement.

  • In 2010, an estimated 10.1 million (13.6 percent) children had been diagnosed with asthma in their lifetimes, and 7.0 million (9.4 percent) still had asthma.
  • During 2001–2010, the proportion of persons with asthma in the United States increased by 14.8 percent.
  • In 2008, children aged 5–17 years who had one or more asthma attacks in the previous 12 months missed 10.5 million days of school. Adults who were currently employed and had one or more asthma attacks during the previous 12 months missed 14.2 million days of workdue to asthma.

IQAir is proud that the American Lung Association has selected IQAir as an educational partner to raise awareness on indoor air quality issues.

  • In 2009, asthma accounted for 3,388 deaths, 479,300 hospitalizations, 1.9 million emergency department (ED) visits, and 8.9 million physician office visits.
  • The estimated total cost of asthma to society, including medical expenses ($50.1 billion per year), loss of productivity resulting from missed school or work days ($3.8 billion per year), and premature death ($2.1 billion per year), was $56 billion (2009 dollars) in 2007.

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