In May 2020 we launched our new five year strategy: Stopping Asthma Deaths in Ireland. Our new vision commits to bringing an end to asthma deaths by 2030.
Our mission is to stop asthma deaths in Ireland.
We are the voice of the 380,000 people with asthma in Ireland, and our work radically transforms their quality of life.
Our vision is that everyone with asthma in Ireland lives a full life, symptom-free.
At least one person with asthma dies every week in Ireland due to the disease, with an estimated 90 per cent of these deaths believed to be preventable.
Sarah O’Connor, CEO of the Asthma Society of Ireland, said: “The core focus of our work until 2030 will be eradicating asthma deaths. While we do know that the vast majority of asthma deaths are preventable in Ireland, there is not sufficient data to precisely identify what is causing them. This leaves healthcare planners uninformed and patients at unnecessarily high risk. It is critical that the Minister for Health commits to conducting a comprehensive investigation into asthma deaths and to publishing a plan to drastically reduce asthma deaths in Ireland.”
As the organisation embarks on its fifth decade, the Asthma Society’s new five-year strategic plan is intentionally ambitious. CEO Sarah O’Connor joined the organisation in February 2018 and has set about making the Asthma Society a force for change in the Irish healthcare landscape. It quickly became clear to Sarah that every action taken in the organisation was ultimately an integral step to, not just improving the lives of people with asthma, but saving their lives. The new strategic plan for the organisation brings together its health promotion, education, advocacy, awareness and fundraising functions to deliver the best services possible for asthma patients.
Sarah O’Connor continued: “We know that asthma can be mistakenly considered – including by some patients and medical professionals – a harmless condition experienced in early childhood. Although asthma can be easily managed for many people living with the disease, it can severely impede patients’ physical, mental and financial well-being and, without proper treatment, can – and at times does – prove fatal.
Without access to specialist care, regular medical reviews and tailored self-management plans, improved prescription protocols and access to life-changing medications, people with asthma will continue to die. We in the Asthma Society will continue to deliver best-in-class services and supports and to advocate on behalf of patients to secure financial supports. We are also more focused than ever on ensuring asthma patients are receiving equal access to the highest standard of care and are therefore calling on the incoming government to commit to a national review of asthma deaths in its programme for government.
The Asthma Society’s five year strategy, Stopping Asthma Deaths in Ireland, can be viewed and downloaded by clicking here. The strategy was developed on foot of engagement with patients and healthcare professionals through focus groups, surveys, one-to-one meetings and at key events, and the Asthma Society welcomes feedback on its strategy.