Asthma rates have risen nearly 18 percent in Connecticut between 2000 and 2010 and the disease disproportionately affects women, children and minorities, the most recent state survey of the disease shows.
The Department of Public Health’s “The Burden of Asthma in Connecticut – 2012 Surveillance Report,” also shows that in 2010, the most recent year for which data was available, approximately 89,300, or 11.3 percent, of all Connecticut children had asthma. The survey additionally shows that 246,100 adults in Connecticut, or 9.2 percent, suffer from the disease.
Between 2000 and 2010, the asthma rates among adults in Connecticut adults increased 17.9 percent. From 2005 to 2010, the, the rate of asthma among Connecticut children increased 7.6 percent, the report states. And the disease, the study found, afflicts women, children and minorities more than other populations.
In East Hampton, 376 people suffering from asthma visited a hospital emergency department between 2005 and 2009, the report states. In Portland, that figure for the same time period was 139.
“Children, females, Hispanics, non-Hispanic Blacks, and residents of Bridgeport, Hartford, New Haven, Waterbury, and Stamford are disproportionately affected by asthma in Connecticut.”
The increased rates of asthma has led to a corresponding hike in emergency room visits by those who suffer from the disease, the report states.
“Among Connecticut residents from 2005 – 2009, adult asthma hospitalization rates were highest for females, persons aged 65 years and older, and Hispanics. For the same time period, child asthma hospitalization rates were highest for boys, children under five years old, and non-Hispanic Blacks. In 2009, the overall asthma hospitalization rate was highest for persons who lived in New Haven. With regard to asthma ED visits from 2005 – 2009, adult asthma ED visit rates were highest for: females, 18 -24 year olds, 25-34 year olds, and Hispanics. During the same five-year period, child asthma ED visits rates were highest for boys, children under five years old, and Hispanics. The 50.9 percent increase in asthma ED visits among Hispanic children from 2005 to 2009 is of particular concern. In 2009, the asthma ED visit rate was highest for people who lived in Hartford.”
The report goes on to say that the health department’s Asthma Control Program is working on initiatives that would reduce inequities in health care access for asthma sufferers and is disseminating information to local communities to help reduce the incidence of the disease.
Here are several “fast facts” from the asthma survey:
♦ There were 50 asthma deaths in 2009.
♦ 54% of people with asthma limited their usual activities because of asthma
♦ 66% of people with asthma had asthma that was not well or very poorly controlled
♦ 10.2% of adults with asthma smoked
♦ 22.3% of children with asthma lived in a household with at least one adult who smoked
♦ 19.6% of obese children also had asthma
♦ 40.1% of people with asthma did not have a routine checkup during the past year
♦ 65.7% of people with asthma have never been given an Asthma Action Plan
♦ From 2000 to 2009, non-Hispanic Black children had the highest annual rates of asthma
hospitalizations across all other child and adult race/ethnicity groups.
♦ Hispanic adults had 5.2 times the rate of asthma hospitalizations as non-Hispanic White
adults from 2005 to 2009.
♦ From 2000 to 2009, Hispanic children had the highest asthma ED visit rates of all race/
ethnicity subgroups. Non-Hispanic Black children experienced the second highest asthma ED visit rates for that time period.
♦ Between 2005 and 2009, the asthma ED visit rate for Hispanic children increased 50.9%.
♦ New Haven residents had the highest asthma hospitalization rate in the state in 2009.
♦ The rate of asthma ED visits was highest in 2009 for Hartford residents.
♦ Public insurance was the payment source for 73.8% of asthma hospitalizations and 60% of asthma ED visits in 2009.
♦ Of the 2,741 children enrolled in HUSKY A who had asthma ED visits in 2007, only 24.4% received follow-up care within two weeks of their ED visits in accordance with national treatment guidelines.
♦ Approximately 11.3% of HUSKY A enrollees less than age 21 had asthma in 2007.