Staggering lung disease statistics prompt urgent £5 million investment
New studies from charity ‘Asthma and Lung UK’ (ALUK) found that lung disease deaths in the UK are the highest in Western Europe.
The staggering statistics have prompted an expanded approach towards research and development of lung diseases from ALUK.
ALUK’s studies show that cases of lung disease related deaths in the UK have been on the rise for the past 20 years.
It is reported that 500,000 people in the UK died from deaths relating to lung diseases over a seven-year period.
In 2018 alone, 84,721 respiratory deaths were recorded in the UK.
The charity has described the state of lung health in the UK as ‘shameful’, stating the need for improved research and development solutions to the problem.
More than just numbers
After its relaunch in February, ALUK established a new five-year strategy upon the results of the study.
Lung diseases are currently the third most common cause of death in the UK and it’s currently costing the NHS £9 billion every year.
Despite this, lung-related health care is receiving less than 2% of public funding.
Dispelling the misconceptions
It is evident that the seriousness of lung problems in relation to other diseases is not taken as seriously, despite what we are seeing from the data.
A predominant factor in the poor state of the nation’s lung health is that people believe lung conditions aren’t life-threatening. This is a major misconception.
Through spreading awareness of how ‘shameful’ lung health is in the UK, this misconception can be dispelled.
ALUK aim to reduce lung disease deaths by 20% by 2027. When making everyone aware of these gruesome statistics, this can become a possibility.
The end goal is to provide support for everyone effected by all forms of lung disease.
Research and innovation as a solution
ALUK’s solution to achieving this goal is through research and innovation.
Their aim is to expand their research and innovation programme so that £5 million is being invested into relevant research each year.
With the aim to “develop at least three new self-management tools” for 2 million people suffering with lung diseases, ALUK want to make training programmes and essential advice easily accessible to those who need it.
“By 2027, we will give 80% of people with lung conditions the opportunity to access our network of Breathe Easy support groups” states the ALUK Strategy to 2027.
With this, the strain on public healthcare is minimised and individuals are able to monitor their personal health through digitalised platforms and shared networks.
Looking to the future…
The statistics right now make for harrowing reading and harsh truths.
However, for ALUK, research and innovation is the solution for the future. By identifying the problem and acknowledging its severity and scale, goals can be achieved.
Through effective research and innovation lung disease deaths can become a thing of the past, not just in the UK, but worldwide.