US COPD Coalition

COPD Prevalence Questions Added to BRFSS


Determining the prevalence of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) in every State is becoming a reality, thanks to the 2011 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) survey released November 9th by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

“The BRFSS will help us to develop a comprehensive picture of COPD statewide, countywide, and ultimately on a national basis,” says Miriam O’Day, senior director of Public Policy at the COPD Foundation. “The data we’ll now collect through the BRFSS will be layered on top of other data collected, enhancing our understanding of COPD and its co-morbidities and helping us to design targeted responses.”

The Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) is the world’s largest, on-going telephone health survey system, tracking health conditions and risk behaviors in the United States yearly since 1984. Currently, data are collected monthly in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Guam. Approximately 400,000 individuals will be surveyed through this system.

“Dollars follow data,” says O’Day, emphasizing the importance of having comprehensive data understanding the extent of the burden of COPD in this nation in order to open the doors to more research and awareness. “The inclusion of a set of questions regarding COPD is a major step forward in identifying and addressing the major problems faced by every State.”