Lung disease action required

Respiratory physiotherapists hope to mobilise CSP members in the fight against lung disease, by getting their MPs to persuade the government to take urgent action.

Respiratory disease is the UK's biggest killer, responsible for one in five deaths and costing the NHS more than £6 billion a year. The figures are highlighted in the British Thoracic Society's latest report into the burden of lung disease. The Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Respiratory Care has welcomed the report, along with the new national service framework for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. However, while the ACPRC is hopeful the framework will improve diagnosis, treatment and care for people with COPD, it feels it does not go far enough. It wants to see the government do more to tackle all forms of lung disease. An ACPRC spokesperson said: 'We are concerned by the high burden of overall respiratory disease. We note that one million hospital admissions were for respiratory disease in 2004-2005; furthermore, social inequality causes a higher proportion of deaths in respiratory disease than any other disease.' The ACPRC is urging physiotherapists to contact their MPs to highlight the huge cost of respiratory disease to the NHS and to patients. MPs should also be asked to request the government acts promptly to tackle rising mortality and morbidity rates for other lung diseases such as sleep apnoea, tuberculosis, mesothelioma and occupational lung disease. Download the Burden of Lung Disease report for 2006 from www.brit-thoracic.org.uk
Author
Lisa Wilde

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