The European Respiratory Society (ERS), the Global Allergy and Airways Patient Platform (GAAPP), AstraZeneca, Amgen and leading respiratory clinicians have launched the International Respiratory Coalition, a new partnership to transform post-pandemic respiratory healthcare.
The Coalition aims to support governments and healthcare systems in their recovery from COVID-19 by strengthening respiratory care. The Coalition will seek to improve outcomes for people living with respiratory diseases by supporting the creation of ambitious national-level respiratory strategies and by building resilience in managing pandemics. Membership is open to organisations and individuals within the respiratory community who share the Coalition’s goals.
Nearly 600 million people globally live with chronic respiratory diseases including asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), bronchiectasis and many rare and severe respiratory diseases. About four million premature deaths each year have been attributed to chronic respiratory diseases, which is double the number of reported deaths from COVID-19 in the first 12 months of the pandemic. Prior to the pandemic, progress to improve chronic respiratory diseases care was slow, and in some countries had stagnated over the past decade.
During the pandemic, some patients with chronic respiratory diseases that contracted COVID-19 were shown to be at greater risk of hospitalisation. In addition, patients with chronic respiratory diseases faced disruptions to healthcare services and quality care, demonstrating new approaches to enable patients to better control their condition, reduce hospitalisations, and ultimately to decrease pressure on healthcare systems, are needed.
Incoming ERS President Professor Marc Humbert, said: “The COVID-19 pandemic is having a devastating impact on human health and is revealing gaps in respiratory care that require urgent attention. The European Respiratory Society is excited to be a founding member of the International Respiratory Coalition, working to ensure better respiratory care is central to government and healthcare system recovery plans.”
In the coming weeks, ERS, the Global Allergy & Airways Patient Platform and industry partners will lay out a roadmap for the future of the coalition and opportunities for involvement by the community.