November, 2014: COPD Awareness Month

WHEREAS, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a term used to refer to a group of diseases that cause airflow obstruction and breathing related problems, includes emphysema, chronic bronchitis, and in some cases, asthma and severe bronchiectasis; and

WHEREAS, in 2008 COPD became the third leading cause of death in the US, 12 years earlier than predicted, and the only top 5 causes of death that is not declining; and

WHEREAS, COPD is a chronic and progressive disease that affects over 24 million persons nationwide, half of whom have not been properly diagnosed, and 70% of whom are under age 65; and

WHEREAS, COPD is considered to be the 2nd leading cause of disability in the US; and

WHEREAS, smoking is the primary risk factor for COPD, other risk factors include environmental and exposure to air pollution, second hand smoke, and genetics; and

WHEREAS, a genetic condition called Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency tends to cause individuals to develop COPD; and

WHEREAS, COPD kills more women than breast cancer and diabetes combined, and women who smoke are 13 times more likely to die from COPD than non-smokers; and

WHEREAS, nationwide the cost of COPD in 2010 was $49.9 billion including healthcare services, indirect costs through loss of productivity, and the deterioration of personal health; and

WHEREAS, concerted public outreach efforts such as a DRIVE4COPD, the nation’s largest public awareness and screening campaign for COPD, and the NHLBI’s COPD: Learn More Breathe Better Campaign, can dramatically improve public awareness of COPD, and

WHEREAS, there is no cure for COPD, but increased awareness, early detection and proper health management can slow the progression of the disease and lead to reduced costs, improved quality of life and self-sufficiency for our residents;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Rick Snyder, governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim November 2014 as COPD Awareness Month in Michigan.