INLAND: Report shows Hispanics affected by asthma

(October 25, 2011)

The American Lung Association Tuesday released a report indicating that biological, environmental, political and cultural factors affect Hispanics and asthma rates.

Of California’s estimated 13 million Hispanics, about 1.4 million of them have asthma, according to the American Lung Association in California. Asthma is a severe, life long and life-threatening disease that has no cure.

Almost 97,000 Hispanics in Riverside County and about 143,000 in San Bernardino County have asthma, the association found. Of all Inland area asthma sufferers, Hispanics account for most hospitalizations and emergency department visits, state records show.

Compared to non-Hispanic whites, Hispanics with asthma are less likely to go to a regular doctor or clinic, get prescribed medicines and have access to specialized care, the American Lung Association report found. Hispanics are more likely to be treated in emergency departments or hospitalized.

“Some Hispanics face social and economic disadvantages that make them less able to manage their asthma,” said Jane Warner, president and CEO of the American Lung Association in California. “Hispanics make up 37 percent of the population in California and it is critical that we address the burden of asthma as it grows with the population.”