This year’s World COPD Day will be on 18 November 2015. British Lung Foundation support groups throughout the country will helping to raise awareness among local residents of the lung disease chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and its symptoms.
The day’s theme is about encouraging people affected by COPD to take control of the disease and live fuller, more active lives. People can join the day on Twitter by following #COPDCare.
COPD is the name used to describe a number of conditions including emphysema and chronic bronchitis. It kills around 30,000 a year in the UK – more than any type of cancer other than lung cancer – and can severely affect quality of life.
However, two thirds of people living with this condition are estimated to remain undiagnosed without the support and treatment needed to help them manage the condition.
To mark the day, the British Lung Foundation will be launching a new booklet, ‘First Steps to living with COPD’, for newly diagnosed patients. The booklet aims to help people recently diagnosed with COPD learn about their condition in the first few months after diagnosis.
It gives them information and guidance about the ‘First Steps’ they should take to manage their condition. The BLF is also encouraging health care professionals to take part in the day. The charity will be hosting a Twitter chat with the Association of Respiratory Nurse Specialists (ARNS) on 18 November at 8pm. Follow @lunguk and the hashtag #COPDCare to take part.
Mike McKevitt, Head of Patient Services at the British Lung Foundation, said:
“COPD is one of the biggest killers in the UK, yet many people haven’t even heard of it and millions are living with the disease without even knowing it. By working with our wonderful Breathe Easy groups all around the country, we hope to catch these missing millions, potentially saving lives in the process.”
People can support World COPD Day by texting ‘COPD’ to 70500 to donate £5 to help the BLF fight the growing impact of COPD on the UK’s health.
About Breathe Easy
The BLF Breathe Easy network provides free support and advice for people with COPD as well as for people affected by any lung condition, such as lung cancer and asthma, or rarer conditions such as idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) or mesothelioma. There are over 230 groups across the UK. Visit the BLF website for further information.
About the British Lung Foundation
The British Lung Foundation is the only UK charity fighting to help the 1 in 5 people in the UK affected by lung disease, by researching new treatments, campaigning for better awareness and services, and providing support and advice for patients, carers and family members. For further information, please visit www.blf.org.uk.
For help and support, call the BLF Helpline on 03000 030 555. To donate £5 to help the BLF fight lung disease, please text COPD to 70500.