COPD hospitalizations on the rise in US

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A joint report released by the American Lung Association of Minnesota and the Minnesota COPD Coalition shows that chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is sending more Minnesotans to the hospital, and may be contributing to rising health care costs across in the state.

The report has some sobering findings on a condition that is now the 4th leading cause of death in the United States.

Some of the key points:

– In 2006, 1,760 Minnesotans aged 45 and older died of COPD

– From 1996 to 2007, emergency department visits due to COPD increased 250%

– While males have a higher rate of death due to COPD, females are quickly closing the gap

– The average cost of hospitalization for COPD is high: $18,975, excluding professional fees.

While the report includes some alarming statistics on the scope of COPD in Minnesota, the state is considered to be in the forefront of research, training and education on chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

The Minnesota COPD Coalition was the first of its kind in the nation, and has already held two statewide Summits (another is scheduled to be held Dec. 2 in Roseville, Minn.) on COPD care, pulmonary rehabilitation and patient and caregiver education.

Source: American Lung Association of Minnesota, USA

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