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What Are the Statistics and Disparities Associated With Asthma?

Nancy Nathenson, RRT

June 15, 2024

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Question

What are the statistics and disparities associated with asthma?

Answer

Asthma imposes a significant burden on individuals and society as a whole. In the United States, approximately 25 million people have been diagnosed with asthma, with an additional number remaining undiagnosed. Children are particularly affected, with one in ten experiencing asthma-related symptoms. The economic costs associated with asthma are substantial, encompassing expenses related to medications, healthcare utilization, and lost productivity.

Tragically, asthma-related mortality disproportionately affects certain demographic groups, with Black individuals facing a significantly higher risk compared to their white counterparts. Disparities in asthma prevalence and outcomes are influenced by a myriad of factors, including access to care, socioeconomic status, environmental exposures, and cultural differences. Addressing these disparities requires a multifaceted approach encompassing healthcare policy, public health initiatives, and community-based interventions.

Asthma is a complex condition influenced by both genetic and environmental factors. By identifying individuals at heightened risk and implementing targeted prevention strategies, we can mitigate the burden of asthma and improve outcomes for affected individuals. Additionally, addressing disparities in asthma prevalence and outcomes is essential for achieving health equity and ensuring that all individuals have access to high-quality asthma care.

 

This Ask the Expert is an edited excerpt from the course Understanding Asthma And Anaphylaxis In The Occupational Therapy Settingby Nancy Nathenson, RRT.

 

 

 


nancy nathenson

Nancy Nathenson, RRT

Nancy Nathenson is a respiratory therapist with over 35 years of experience, from ICU to rehabilitation. She delivers clinical education and training on disease management, prevention, new technologies, and patient safety to RTs and interdisciplinary teams, including nurses, therapists, EMS providers, and communities. Nancy is a Community Asthma and COPD Expert for the Allergy and Asthma Network. As a consultant, she translates research on evidence-based strategies to improve community and patient outcomes across the continuum of care, always including the important role of the family and caregiver.


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