Luchando por el Aire: The Burden of Asthma on Hispanics

(October 24, 2011)

Did you know that Hispanics/Latinos with asthma are less likely to be prescribed appropriate medicines and more likely to end up being treated in the emergency department or hospitalized in a crisis? These are just two of the reasons why Hispanics face a greater burden when it comes to managing their asthma.

The American Lung Association has a new report called Luchando por el Aire: The Burden of Asthma on Hispanics, which looks at the complex factors that increase asthma’s burden on the Hispanic population. The report is part of the Lung Association’s Disparities in Lung Health Series.

“Luchando por el Aire” is best translated as “fighting for air,” which Hispanics with asthma do every day in order to breathe. Hispanics with asthma face an uphill climb when it comes to managing their asthma. Here are just a few of the reasons why:

  • Hispanics are less likely to be in the care of a regular doctor and less likely to have specialized care;
  • They are 165 percent more likely to live in counties with unhealthy levels of particulate matter pollution; and
  • Hispanics are only 16 percent of the population, but account for nearly one third of those not protected by health insurance.

With Hispanics as the nation’s fastest growing ethnic group, and the urgency of addressing the burden of asthma grows with it. The American Lung Association recommends action steps to help eliminate these disparities. To learn more: