Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Cory Booker today unveiled legislation to help adults and children with asthma lead healthier lives. Under the Family Asthma Act, states would create programs to better educate families on asthma management and prevention, and to improve asthma research and data collection. With enhanced research and education, this legislation would help decrease the number of asthma-related deaths and help reduce asthma-caused hospitalizations.
“As a mom, with a son who suffers from asthma, I know what it feels like to rush a scared child to the emergency room,” said Senator Gillibrand. “This legislation provides funding for vital research programs to better monitor this disease; and gives communities the resources they need to care for an asthmatic member of their family. We have to better understand this disease and offer proper education and training, to manage and prevent attacks.”
“The education and research programs this legislation supports will make a real difference for millions of asthma sufferers, many of whom are unaware of the steps they can take to avoid experiencing some of the most severe effects of the disease,” said Senator Booker. “The more data we collect and research we conduct, the more lives we can save, particularly in minority and low-income communities where residents are at a disproportionately higher risk for asthma and other respiratory disorders.”
More than 25 million Americans suffer with asthma and more than 7,000 die every year from asthma related complications. In New York, more than 1.4 million adults and 390,000 children have asthma. In New Jersey, more than 593,000 adults and 178,000 children have asthma.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), less than half of those with asthma know how to avoid asthma triggers. Under the Family Asthma Act, the CDC would make recommendations and partner with state and local health departments to create a plan, to better educate residents about asthma. This legislation would also enable the National Institute of Health to award grants for pilot projects to research factors that trigger asthma. Additionally, the Family Asthma Act would enhance data collection to better study current treatment and management of asthma and to build a comprehensive surveillance system for tracking asthma cases.
More information about Senator Gillibrand and Senator Booker’s Family Asthma Act is attached.