Health Days 2014

World COPD Day
The Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is not a single disease, but a general term for a number of chronic lung diseases which obstruct the flow of air in the lungs such as chronic bronchitis and chronic untreatable asthma. The purpose behind observing the World COPD Day is to spread health awareness, get people familiar with the disease, and to reduce the infection rates. The 'Breathe' population-based reference study, deemed to be the first regional study about the COPD in the Middle East and Africa, pointed that more than 13 million persons in the Middle East and Africa are suffering from the disease and the rate of the spread of the disease amounts to 2.4% of the population aging 40 years and above. Globally, almost 64 million are infected with the COPD. The World Health Organization (WHO) predicts that the COPD will become the third leading cause of death worldwide by 2030.
COPD Key Facts:
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a life-threatening lung disease that interferes with normal breathing – it is more than a “smoker’s cough”.
  • More than 3 million people died of COPD in 2005, which is equal to 5% of all deaths globally that year.
  • Almost 90% of COPD deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries.
  • The primary cause of COPD is tobacco smoke (through tobacco use or second-hand smoke). However, there are other causes, including environmental pollution, asthma and repeated inflammations of the respiratory tract.
  • The disease now affects men and women almost equally, due in part to increased tobacco use among women in high-income countries..
  • Total deaths from COPD are projected to increase by more than 30% in the next 10 years unless urgent action is taken to reduce underlying risk factors, especially tobacco use.
  • The disease develops slowly, but with the passage of time it becomes a serious disease causing inability to do the daily activities such as cooking, walking, etc.
  • COPD is not curable, but treatment can slow the progress of the disease.
Internationally approved date: November 19th, 2014
Locally approved date: Muharram 26th, 1436H
Theme of the World COPD Day 2014:
 Targeted groups:
  • Smokers and secondhand smokers.
  • Workers in chemical plants.
  • The elderly (40 years and above).
  • Children with recurrent problems and inflammations in the lower respiratory tract.
  • Workers in the health sectors and health societies.
Objectives and general messages of the World COPD Day:
  • Raising awareness about this disease.
  • Providing and preparing healthy environments, especially for the poor and low-income groups.
  • Prevention against the disease, by avoiding smoking and maintaining the healthy diet and physical activity.
  • Preventing the incidence of early disability or death as a result of the COPD.
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Last Update : 12 November 2014 01:50 PM
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