November is COPD Awareness Month, and that means we all need to get out into our communities and let people know what this chronic lung disease is all about and how respiratory therapists are involved in its treatment.
Here at the AARC, we’re posting COPD-related messages on our social media pages throughout November, and you can help us reach even more people by “sharing” and “re-tweeting” those messages to your social media friends and followers as well.
We’re also excited to be involved in the COPD Foundation’s #GoOrangeChallenge! campaign and are hoping many of you will be too. The Foundation has great resources you can use to send out messages via social media, find COPD awareness events in your community, plan events of your own, and more.
And if you want to get some great press for your department’s role in COPD care, consider contacting your local media and inviting them to come out and do a story.
World COPD Day is on Nov. 16 this year, so that would be a great day for any media outlet to give COPD a little love. You can find lots of ideas and tips for making it happen on our Public Relations page.
Capping off a great year
All of this builds on COPD public awareness activities the AARC has already been involved in over the past year.
Our latest effort took place during AARC Congress 2016, which wrapped up in San Antonio last month. The Association’s second annual Respiratory Patient Advocacy Summit brought COPD and other chronic lung disease patients together with respiratory experts in town for the meeting to uncover new ways we can all work together.
Our support of the Medicare Telehealth Parity Act is helping to advance the concept that COPD patients can and should receive the disease management services of respiratory therapists via telemedicine technology as well. We advocated for this legislation during our 2016 Lobby Day on Capitol Hill and will do so again when we reconvene on the Hill in the spring of 2017.
We’re also playing a key role in the COPD National Action Plan in the works at the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. This groundbreaking document is expected to significantly improve the care and treatment received by people with the condition.
COPD Awareness Month is the perfect time to build your own skills in the care and treatment of people with the disease too, and we have lots of great resources to help. See What’s Available