The Department of Health (DoH) has unveiled plans which it claims will change the lives of millions of people suffering from asthma and chronic pulmonary obstructive disease (COPD) for the better.
In a statement issued yesterday (July 18th), the DoH announced its intention to forge closer relationships between the NHS, patients, voluntary organisations and social care groups to improve diagnosis and treatment.
"This will reduce the number of deaths by focusing on better prevention, earlier diagnosis and excellent care," said health secretary Andrew Lansley. "This is just the start in helping fundamentally to reduce the burden of respiratory disease."
According to official statistics, asthma and COPD combined cost the health service a total of £2 billion each year, while the latter - which incorporates a number of different lung conditions - results in the loss of 24 million working days.
Last week, researchers from the University of Aberdeen drew a link between asthma and foetus size in pregnant women.