COPD: Start the Conversation
November is National COPD Awareness Month
As part of National COPD Awareness Month, the COPD Learn More Breathe Better® campaign encourages Breathe Better Network members and all those interested in raising COPD awareness to conduct events, discussions and other types of outreach to help start the conversation about COPD in your community.
While an estimated 24 million Americans suffer from COPD, as many of half remain undiagnosed. But, with early diagnosis and treatment people with COPD can improve their quality of life and begin to breathe a little easier.
Whether you are a large group or one individual, there is something we can all do to help those who may be affected by COPD take the first step to breathing better by talking with their health care provider. To assist you in your efforts, the COPD Learn More Breathe Better® campaign has developed the 2013 Fall Outreach Toolkit.
2013 Fall Outreach Toolkit
Feel free to use all or parts of the 2013 Fall Outreach Toolkit featuring the following resources:
- Better Talk Means Better Treatment* (324 kb) An infographic with data on some of the communication barriers between providers and patients when it comes to talking about COPD.
- Get the Most from Your Office Visit* (250 kb) A new fact sheet for those who think they may be suffering from COPD to help them make the most of their time with their health care provider.
- Talking with Your Patients about COPD* (275 kb) A new fact sheet geared toward health care providers to help them start the conversation about COPD with their patients.
- Don't Let COPD Take Your Breath Away — Bridge the Exam Room Communications Gap A sample newsletter article that you can use in your organization's newsletter, on your Web site or in other communications.
- A template Letter-to-the-Editor that you can make your own with tips on how to place in your local print and/or online outlets.
- A customizable Press Release to help promote your activities to local media.
- A template Media Advisory to give your local print and online outlets a "heads-up" about your event.
- New state-by-state factsheets from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, including local data on the prevalence of COPD. Click on the link to find out what COPD looks like in your area.
- Our animated Sounds of COPD widget includes audio clips of some of the most recognizable symptoms of COPD. Help those who may be at risk begin to listen to their lungs by sharing this widget on your blog or web page.
- COPD Learn More Breathe Better campaign fact sheets which contain important information about COPD symptoms, risk factors and how to get tested – as well as how to start that conversation with someone you love.
To raise awareness about COPD we all need to do our part. Across the country, Breathe Better Network members will be hosting gatherings during the month of November to facilitate conversations about COPD. To begin to increase the dialogue on COPD in your community, consider some of these ideas:
- If your group doesn't currently have an event or meeting planned in November, you can do something as simple as host an informal discussion on COPD at a local community center or even host a discussion in an online forum.
- If your group already has regular meetings, increase the dialogue by bringing a friend or family member that you think could be at risk.
- Set up a table to distribute important information on COPD outside events in your community. With the proper permissions, some of these locations could include your local library, shopping mall, church or community center.
- Hold a luncheon, a respiratory rally or a health fair/spirometry screening.
- Check out some of these event planning and outreach tips for additional ideas to help get you started.
Don't forget to register your event on the COPD Event Listing page and we will promote your activities via the campaign Web site, Facebook and Twitter pages!
*PDF files require the free Adobe Acrobat Reader application for viewing.