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Ten Canberrans share their asthma stories with federal politicians this Asthma Week

CANBERRA: A group of ten Canberrans will form part of a group of people with lived experience of asthma who will meet with decision makers at Parliament House to share their stories and bust some common myths about asthma.

To coincide with Asthma Week which occurs at the beginning of Spring each year, ten Canberrans will meet with politicians to officially launch Asthma Australia’s new report Busting Asthma Myths Report.

The report shows the far-reaching impacts of asthma, with two thirds of Australians affected by asthma in some way, including almost one in five having the condition and a further 45% who know someone with asthma.

Michele Goldman, CEO of Asthma Australia said; “Stories are the best way for us to communicate the true impact of asthma on Australians. We know that asthma is one of the most common chronic diseases in Australia, but many of us don’t understand the true day-to-day impacts for people with asthma including gasping for air and being limited in their daily activities. Common misconceptions about asthma need to be addressed to ensure that people take the condition seriously and are able to support people with the disease.”

Simone Carton is the mother of five children, three of whom have asthma and a member of the Asthma Australia Board. Simone understands the need for a greater awareness of asthma across the community;

“Three of my five children have asthma. We’ve had a number of visits to the GP or hospital and pharmacy, and I’ve experienced those out-of-hours moments trying to decide whether to give the prednisone from the fridge and see the GP in the morning or head straight to the hospital.”

“When a child has asthma, the whole community around them needs to be aware of how to best manage the condition when they find themselves having a flare up. This includes family members, teachers and members of the local sporting teams. It is vital to ensuring that children with asthma are safe and well.”

Based on a poll of over 1,000 Australians the Busting Asthma Myths report shows:

  • Two thirds of Australians are impacted by asthma;
  • 31% of Australians do not know asthma is life-threatening;
  • 27% believe that people can grow out of asthma;
  • More than half (54%) are not aware that thunderstorms can be a trigger for asthma; and
  • 18% said they had been diagnosed with asthma and 45% said they knew someone with asthma.

Ms Goldman said; “Asthma is a serious condition that needs ongoing management. We need to be doing all we can to prevent the condition and flare ups, to ensure that systems are responsive to people’s needs and to provide the ongoing care and support that is needed to prevent flare ups and keep people healthy and well.”

END

Media contacts:

Caterina Giorgi 040 272 6002 caterina@forpurposeaus.com

Kathy Packenas 0420 980 475 kpackenas@asthma.org.au

Interviews:

Michele Goldman is available for interview.

Simone Carton is available for interview.

Additional case studies are available on request

The full report can be downloaded from: www.asthmaweek.org.au

About Asthma Australia www.asthmaaustralia.org.au

For over 50 years Asthma Australia has been the leader in asthma health care, research and support. Asthma Australia delivers evidence-based preventative health strategies to over 200,000 people every year and provides support, training and resources to the primary health care sector. The organisation funds vital basic science and population health research contributing to national and international understandings of asthma and how best to manage the disease.

 

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