WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, global lung health organizations from the U.S., Europe, Australia, and Asia join together to announce the declaration of World Bronchiectasis Day on July 1, 2022, to raise awareness of bronchiectasis and its increased prevalence in many countries.
Bronchiectasis is a lung disease that affects hundreds of thousands of people worldwide. It is characterized by enlarged or scarred airways that cannot clear mucus properly, resulting in recurring lung infections. Bronchiectasis creates a significant burden on patients and their families. It can lead to accelerated lung function loss resulting in long-term disability and premature death. The disease can occur at any age, though most people are diagnosed later in life. Although there is currently no cure, detecting and treating bronchiectasis early can improve quality of life and may impact the longevity of those affected. While bronchiectasis is often referred to as a rare disease, prevalence is increasing globally.
“By supporting World Bronchiectasis Day, global partners are committed to addressing the critical unmet needs of the bronchiectasis lung disease community,” said Ruth Tal-Singer, PhD, COPD Foundation President & Chief Scientific Officer.
World Bronchiectasis Day is being organized by an international planning committee co-chaired by Tim Aksamit, MD, Medical Director, Bronchiectasis and NTM 360 at the COPD Foundation, and Professor James Chalmers, EMBARC Chair and British Lung Foundation Chair of Respiratory Research, University of Dundee. Representatives from global patient advocacy organizations and professional societies serve on the organizing committee.
The first global organizations to join World Bronchiectasis Day include:
- COPD Foundation and its Bronchiectasis and NTM Research Registry
- European Multicenter Bronchiectasis Audit and Research Collaboration (EMBARC)
- American Thoracic Society (ATS)
- Lung Foundation Australia (LFA)
- The Japanese Respiratory Society (JRS)
- American Lung Association
- European Lung Foundation (ELF)
- NTM Info and Research (NTMir)
“Bronchiectasis has been a neglected disease, and the lack of awareness causes difficulties and distress to many patients,” said Professor James Chalmers. “We have made great advances in the past 10 years, but there is a lot more to do in research and in raising awareness of the condition. We are supporting World Bronchiectasis Day as part of our ongoing commitment with global partners to tackle this neglected disease.”
Lynn Schnapp, MD, president of the American Thoracic Society, added, “Currently, in about 40 percent of cases, the cause of bronchiectasis is unknown. That is 40 percent too many. Our patients deserve better. By partnering with other global societies, it is our intention to amplify awareness around this disease to improve the lives of patients worldwide.”
“We are motivated to work with other leading global lung health organizations as part of World Bronchiectasis Day to increase awareness about bronchiectasis worldwide,” said associate professor Lucy Morgan, Board Chair, Lung Foundation Australia, and chair of the Australian Bronchiectasis Registry. “We’re also committed to further understanding the impact of bronchiectasis on adults and children in Australia while striving to improve their quality of life and equitable access to evidence-based therapies,” she added.
Watch these first-hand stories of people and families living with bronchiectasis. Visit the European Lung Foundation.
To learn more about bronchiectasis, events leading up to and on July 1, a list of collaborating organizations, and information about supporting the annual World Bronchiectasis Day, visit worldbronchiectasisday.org.
About World Bronchiectasis Day
World Bronchiectasis Day, July 1, 2022, aims to raise global awareness of bronchiectasis and help those with the disease and others yet to be diagnosed through education, advocacy, and a global conversation focused on reducing the burden of bronchiectasis for patients and their families worldwide. Learn more by visiting worldbronchiectasisday.org.