Yesterday on Capitol Hill, the U.S. COPD Coalition (USCC) announced their resolution to “Go Orange” for COPD Awareness. It was unveiled by John W. Walsh, Vice Chairman of the USCC and President and Co-Founder of the COPD Foundation. The “Go Orange” resolution is the USCC’s answer to the call by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to increase public awareness of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).
The CDC has established that COPD, which kills one person every four minutes in the U.S., is an important health issue and attention needs to be brought to the national level.
The “Go Orange” Resolution is as follows:
U.S. COPD Coalition Orange Resolution
WHEREAS, An estimated 24 million Americans have COPD but as many as half remain undiagnosed;
WHEREAS, Early COPD screening and detection is critical as most people with COPD are not diagnosed until they have already lost half of their lung function;
WHEREAS, The need for increased awareness of the risk factors and symptoms of COPD can be addressed through the adoption of a national coordinated color signifying the disease;
WHEREAS, The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Air Quality Index uses orange to represent days with unhealthy air quality for sensitive groups, including people with lung disease;
WHEREAS, Several ancient cultures frequently used orange to heal the lungs and increase energy levels;
WHEREAS, Orange is known to represent energy, enthusiasm, determination and success;
WHEREAS, Orange is a strong color that attracts immediate attention;
WHEREAS, The orange and blue pinwheel of DRIVE4COPD, the nation’s largest awareness and screening campaign for COPD, has become a recognizable icon signifying a person’s ability to breathe;
WHEREAS, The U.S. COPD Coalition is a partnering organization of DRIVE4COPD, which has made a significant public health impact on COPD;
NOW, THEREFORE, we, THE MEMBERS AND PARTNERS OF THE U.S. COPD COALITION, do hereby proclaim ORANGE, as
THE OFFICIAL COLOR OF COPD
throughout the country and encourage all community members to utilize orange in their efforts to raise awareness for COPD.
“There is a great need for increased awareness about COPD, and we’re doing this by identifying orange as the official color of COPD awareness,” Dr. James Crapo, Coalition member and COPD Foundation Board Member for the COPD Foundation, says.
Members of the USCC will be utilizing orange in their awareness initiatives going forward, including joining other partnering organizations of DRIVE4COPD—the nation’s single largest awareness campaign for COPD—in encouraging the public to participate in the Great American Screen Off on November 4th.
The USCC encourages individuals age 35 and older to log onto DRIVE4COPD.COM to answer five brief questions to see if they are at risk and talk to their healthcare professionals, and wear orange on November 4th to show support for COPD awareness.
The announcement to “Go Orange” came during a Congressional Briefing on October 11, 2011 at the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center in Washington, DC. The Honorable Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), founding member and current Senate Co-Chair of the Congressional COPD Caucus discussed legislation on COPD; James P. Kiley, Ph.D., Director of the Division of Lung Disease, National Heart, Lung Blood Institute, presented strategies for improving COPD prevention; and James D. Crapo, M.D, pulmonologist and Professor of Medicine at National Jewish Health and the University of Colorado, Denver, provided an overview of the burden of COPD.
Danica Patrick, Go Daddy, NASCAR Nationwide Series™, IndyCar Driver, and DRIVE4COPD Campaign Ambassador was also present at the Briefing to discuss the importance of screenings and inform Members of Congress about the significant burden of COPD. Danica Patrick asked for their commitment to encourage screening for risk of COPD in their local communities.
Pictures below, from left to right: Wayne Giles, James Kiley, Danica Patrick, John Walsh, James Crapo. Danica Patrick speaking on COPD and John Walsh.