As I processed the information on asthma in Pennsylvania I have learned that we know a lot more about it than we ever did at any time. Unfortunately, just as with other diseases children are more predominantly impacted and the elderly are more severely affected. Asthma affects all races, ages, and genders, but is more common in children than adults (state and local tracking programs, 2015). There are various environmental factors that heighten an individual’s risks of an asthma attack. Air pollution, mold, bad weather, some medicines, excessive exercise, pets, and tobacco smoke are a few of the environmental factors that can trigger asthma attacks (state and local tracking programs, 2015). It seems that increasing rates of asthma and drastic changes in the environment has caused states to track data on asthma.
It appears that data tracking in Pennsylvania goes back as far as 1949. On March 10, 1949, Pennsylvania revised its public-school code to include that inhalers and Epinephrine auto-injectors must be stored with means of access to them (PDOH, 2018). The state of Pennsylvania provides medication assistance relating to asthma through its various health programs. States differ in the data of asthma as a result of differing environmental triggering factors and action plans. In 2004, the age-adjusted asthma mortality rate in PA reflected that 9 per million white/Caucasians and 28 per million black/African Americans died as a result of asthma, along with higher rates amongst elderly which reflects that blacks and the elderly are more severely affected by asthma in the state of Pennsylvania. Female hospitalization in 2011 was higher than males and amongst minorities than whites with rates of; 10.1 whites, 26.9 Hispanics and 52.3 blacks per 10,000 (PDOH, 2018). I learned from the data that the state of PA needs to put plans, medical, educational, and economic, to help minorities overcome issues dealing with asthma. Overall, in the state of Pennsylvania special focus is needed in relieving factors that trigger asthma, an incurable disease, amongst females and minorities. Public education programs on asthma prevention and maintenance would be one way to raise awareness and reach all Pennsylvanians.
Pennsylvania Department of Health. (2018). Retrieved from: https://www.health.pa.gov/topics/Documents/School%20Health/PSC%20Article%20XIV%20Updated%208.12.2016.pdf
Pennsylvania Department of Health. (2018). Retrieved from: https://www.health.pa.gov/topics/programs/Asthma/Pages/Surveillance-Reports.aspx
State and local tracking programs. (2015, November 10). Retrieved from: http://ephtracking.cdc.gov/showStateTracking.action
Ten great public health achievements in the 20th century. (2013, April 26). Retrieved from: http://www.cdc.gov/about/history/tengpha.htm