On June 3, 2010 members of the US COPD Coalition met with the staff of the Congressional COPD Caucus House of Representatives Co-Chairs to discuss the possible introduction of comprehensive COPD legislation. Coalition members discussed the need to enhance the federal response to COPD which is the fourth leading cause of death. “It was terrific to have a large representation of Coalition members at this meeting,” stated Miriam O’Day, Chair of the Coalitions Policy Committee, “We were able to express the need for a legislative approach from the patient, allied health, and provider perspectives. We thanked our House champions for the success that we have had to date in addressing COPD and urged them to go further.”
Vlady Rozenbaum, PhD was at the meeting representing the Coalition’s Executive Committee and his organization COPD Alert. “I shared the gross inequities in COPD research funding compared to the burden of COPD on individuals and society. It was satisfying to have our suggestions heard; however, we will wait to see if Congress will take the strong actions that we recommended. I urge ALL patients to remain engaged in this process!”
The meeting was just the first step towards the ultimate goal of enhancing the federal response to COPD. Members of the Coalition will again head to Capitol Hill on June 10th to meet with the staff of the Caucus Senate Co-Chairs. The US COPD Coalition is committed to following through with these efforts and needs the COPD Community to start organizing and engaging your legislators so your voice is heard! Visit the Action Alert section of the website and utilize the COPD Action Center where, in less than five minutes, you can ask your representatives to join the US COPD Caucus. Most importantly stay tuned for updates on the legislative process and make sure to take action when there are important opportunities to help create momentum in Washington to combat the burden of COPD everywhere. Let’s let everyone hear the collective voice of the over 12 million diagnosed COPDers, family, friends and providers!