SOURCE: Ontario Lung Association

Ontario Lung Association

May 08, 2014 09:00 ET

Calling on Candidates to Sign Up for 4 Lung Years

An Election Pledge to Make Healthy Lungs a Priority in Ontario

TORONTO, ON--(Marketwired - May 08, 2014) - Even though one in five people in Ontario has a serious lung disease, there is no coordinated provincial plan to address the growing lung health crisis.

That is why the Ontario Lung Association is asking candidates in the June 12 election to take a deep breath and sign the 4 Lung Years Pledge -- a promise that if elected they will support a comprehensive Lung Health Action Plan for Ontario.

During the campaign, the Ontario Lung Association (@OntarioLung) and its lung health advocates will be using social media to encourage party leaders and candidates to share photos of their signed 4 Lung Years Pledge. All Ontarians are invited to join the conversation -- and share why they feel lung health should be made a priority -- using hashtag #4LungYears.

Of the four chronic diseases responsible for eight in 10 deaths in Ontario -- cancers, cardiovascular diseases, lung disease and diabetes -- only lung disease does not have its own coordinated provincial strategy.

"Lung health must become a top health priority in Ontario," said George Habib, president and CEO of the Ontario Lung Association. "A lung health action plan will not only improve the lives of the 2.4 million women, men and children living with lung disease, it will also save billions of health-care dollars."

The Ontario Lung Association is currently consulting with stakeholders throughout the province on the draft framework for an Ontario Lung Health Action Plan that will reduce the impact of lung disease, improve lung health and save scarce health-care resources.

"Every Ontarian who breathes benefits from policies that make lung health a priority in our province," said Habib. "Therefore, we call on all candidates to sign the 4 Lung Years Pledge, a commitment that, if elected, they will work to implement the Ontario Lung Health Action Plan during their first four-year term."

The Ontario Lung Association is a registered charity that provides information, education and funding for research to improve lung health. The organization focuses on the prevention and control of asthma and chronic lung disease, tobacco control and clean air. The Lung Health Information Line -- 1-888-344-LUNG (5864) -- is staffed by certified respiratory educators.

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