About Us

The American Lung Association of the Mid-Atlantic is the oldest voluntary health association established in the United States to fight a specific disease, that being Tuberculosis. The Charter of the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Tuberculosis hangs in the Staff Office conference room in Harrisburg. Lawrence Flick, M.D., was the Society’s first President from 1892-1896. However, there is evidence that the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Tuberculosis dates back long before it was actually chartered. Notes from Dr. Flick have been found dating back to 1884. These artifacts also adorn the conference room walls.

Through the years, the Society has been instrumental and demonstrated the need for adequate follow-up of TB cases. In those early years case registers helped to keep track of individuals harboring this disease. TB Societies used Christmas Seal dollars to demonstrate the need for case registries to document the benefits of keeping adequate records. Treatment of Tuberculosis consisted of rest, good food and fresh air. This became the mode of treatment for young and old alike until the discovery of Isonizid.

This discovery changed the way TB was treated and laid the groundwork for the modern treatment of Tuberculosis. Research funding for the development of Isonizid was shared by the Federal Government and the American Lung Association. The Voluntary sector would utilize public charitable dollars to demonstrate to the government the need and success of research, public health, direct service and community health programs. It was this seed which helped lead the way.

Over the years the name of the organization changed to reflect current lung health initiatives until 1973 when the national organization adopted our current name, the American Lung Association to reflect all the various lung diseases we fight to prevent.

Today we have truly made remarkable strides in all areas of public health, thanks in part to the work of the American Lung Association of the Mid-Atlantic.