Mission Moment January - 2020
(January 13, 2020)
Reversing the Youth Vaping Epidemic
As the American Lung Association continues its key role in the effort to reverse the youth vaping epidemic, the end of 2019 and the start of 2020 brought both promising and disappointing developments. On a positive note, on December 16, Congress passed a bipartisan bill raising the legal age for sale of tobacco products, across the country, to 21, which was then signed into law by President Trump on December 30. While the bill was not perfect, our CEO and President Harold Wimmer said in a statement, “Tobacco 21 is an important component of a comprehensive public health approach, but ultimately, more must be done by both Congress and the Trump Administration if our nation is to halt the youth e-cigarette epidemic.” On January 2, the White House released a plan that allows thousands of flavored e-cigarettes to remain on the market, including all liquids used in tank/mod systems and in single use devices. This plan falls far short of what is needed to protect the health of our nation’s youth. Our objection to this plan drew immediate attention from major media such as USA Today and ABC News.
Saved By The Scan Impact Update
As we enter 2020, “Saved By The Scan” continues to help hundreds of thousands of American at high risk for lung cancer learn more about lifesaving screening. Aided by a new look and campaign ads, as of December 31, 2019, we have seen:
- 1,274,042 website views
- 412,898 quiz completions
- 126,649 quiz respondents eligible for screening (31%)
Our Facebook advertising campaign in the 4th quarter of 2019 helped drive 92,000 new quiz completions and 169,000 website views (included in the above totals). We are excited to see the continued impact of our campaign throughout 2020. Visit SavedByTheScan.org to learn more and see if you or someone you love should take the quiz to see if you should get screened.
Radon Action Month: Did you know that exposure to radon is our nation’s second leading cause of lung cancer? And that an estimated 1 in 15 homes in America has elevated and dangerous levels of radon? The good news is radon testing for your home is easy, inexpensive and could save your life. Learn about the importance of testing the air in your home for radon.
LUNG FORCE Hero: Sean Keoni C. was very busy but doing well as the caregiver for his mother who was being successfully treated for adenocarcinoma, a form of lung cancer. Then came an unexpected challenge, he was diagnosed with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Sean shares an update on himself and his mother.
Do E-Cigarettes Cause Lung Cancer? The number of people who use e-cigarettes is rapidly rising, so it is increasingly important to understand whether e-cigarette aerosol may lead to lung cancer. The nicotine in e-cigarettes and vaping products is derived from tobacco, however, the e-liquid is battery-powered and not burned like combustible cigarettes- producing an aerosol instead of smoke. As a recipient of our Lung Cancer Discovery Award, Moon-Shong Tang is working to answer the question “Do e-cigarettes cause lung cancer?”
WORDS TO KNOW: Cohort
In the world of medical research, many technical terms are used. The Lung Association is here to help you better understand them. A cohort is a group of people. In medical research, cohort studies are used to investigate the causes of disease and to establish links between risk factors and health outcomes. Cohort studies usually observe large groups of people, recording their exposure to certain risk factors to look for possible causes of disease. These studies can also help identify social factors that influence health. Cohort studies can be prospective (meaning they gather data going forward) or retrospective (meaning they look at data that has already been collected). For example, our Lung Health Cohort Study will follow a group of millennials over time to analyze determinants of lung health.
Help Us Protect Healthcare: Quality, affordable healthcare for millions of Americans is at serious risk! On December 18, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit put the entire Affordable Care Act in jeopardy when they issued their ruling in Texas v. United States. The Court of Appeals struck down the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate and remanded the case back to the district court the decision as to whether key patient protections will remain in the future. We were joined by 27 other patient groups in objecting to this decision. Will you join us in urging Congress to act now to protect the health and safety of the 35 million Americans living with lung disease? Please sign our petition to tell Congress to enact healthcare legislation that will protect all patients with lung disease and share your story about why healthcare coverage matters to you.
Quit, Don’t Switch: Despite what Juul and e-cigarette companies want you to believe, switching to vaping is not quitting smoking. E-cigarettes are still tobacco products, and FDA has not approved any e-cigarette as a quit smoking device. In fact, according to one study, 80 percent of the smokers given e-cigarettes did not quit but switched and instead became addicted to e-cigarettes. The Lung Association has been urging the Food and Drug Administration to crack down on these unproven claims. Learn more at Lung.org/quit-dont-switch.
Taking Control of Severe Asthma: With support from an educational grant from Sanofi Genzyme and Regeneron, we have launched a new focus on severe, poorly controlled asthma called Taking Control of Severe Asthma. This month we’ve rolled out a series of new resources, including:
- Our new Lung.org/severe-asthma website – that includes expanded information on asthma control, self-management strategies, and new and emerging severe asthma treatment options.
- Updates to our Asthma Basics online learning module.
- A new online Asthma Control Assessment Tool that will help to assess asthma control and risk.
- Severe Asthma Treatment Planning online Tool and Worksheet to help you talk to your healthcare provider about asthma control and treatment options.
- Severe Asthma downloadable infographic.
- Our EACH Breath Blog will also be posting two new entries on severe asthma.
- On our Inspire Living With Asthma online support community, we will be highlighting new discussions on severe asthma in January and February.
- On January 14 we hosted a patient and caregiver focused webinar about Asthma Control, Severe Asthma and new emerging treatment options such as biologics. A recording of this learning opportunity is available for on demand view and is free.
Working for Healthy Air: The Lung Association is working diligently to improve the air we breathe by protecting existing legislation and supporting new legislation that cleans up air pollution and provides clean, healthy air for all Americans.
- Clean Trucks Announcement: On January 6, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced it is moving forward with its “Cleaner Trucks Initiative” - a move we support. With this announcement, EPA has taken a first step toward writing a new rule that could reduce heavy duty truck pollution nationwide. This could be a positive move forward, depending on the details, although it could undermine even more stringent rules being considered in California. The American Lung Association’s Paul Billings was quoted in New York Times and Washington Post articles.
- Celebrating the Clean Air Act: 2020 marks the 50th anniversary of the Clean Air Act, a landmark public health law enacted with bipartisan cooperation that has saved hundreds of thousands of lives. Along with American University, the American Lung Association is co-hosting a symposium celebrate this life-saving law on March 31. Stay tuned – more details to come!
Climb Season Is Here: Join us at one of our upcoming Fight For Air Climbs. You will make a positive impact in the lives of those affected by lung disease by raising funds for research, education and advocacy. Every dollar raised moves us closer to healthy lungs for everyone. Find a Climb near you.
EACH Breath Blog
The Lung Association and Dyson teamed up to deliver 200 air purifiers to schools in California to help students get back to the classroom without the fear of breathing in toxic air from wildfires. Learn more in our latest blog “Saving Lungs from Wildfire Pollution, One Air Purifier at a Time.”
Thank You Volunteers! As we reflect on our many accomplishments of the past year, we want to thank our priceless volunteers all across the country. Whether you are an e-advocate, story teller, event participant, one of our thousands of trained volunteer health program facilitators, or volunteer in your community in your own, unique way, we salute you! Your generosity and devotion drive our lifesaving mission. Happy New Year and THANK YOU for all you do!
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