Asthma and Allergy Awareness – Facts & Treatment

Vicki Haag
VP Nursing Excellence, Project Management

May is National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month, as designated by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA). According to the AAFA:

  • 10 people per day die of asthma
  • More than 24.5 million Americans have asthma, with over 6 million of them children under age 18
  • 50 million Americans suffer from all types of allergies

As the incidence of asthma and allergy is on the rise, so is the cost of care. Direct and indirect costs are related to medications, hospitalizations, missed work or school days, and lost productivity. Researchers have estimated the annual cost of asthma care in the United States at $56 billion.

There is no cure for asthma or allergies. It is therefore essential to identify symptom onset factors such as time of year, food, and environmental triggers to minimize and manage allergy and asthma exacerbations. Tips for nurses and other healthcare workers to minimize exacerbations include:

  • Assisting patients to identify and avoid their triggers. Keeping a diary of allergy and asthma events and associated factors (food, weather, etc.) may help patients avoid situations that trigger the onset of allergic or asthmatic occurrences.
  • Ensuring patients carry an emergency medical kit that includes emergency medications, contact numbers for providers and family members, and personal health information.
  • Urging patients to wear identification bracelets.
  • Providing support group information.

On a personal note, I have a very close relative over age 65 who was diagnosed with asthma several years ago. Her triggers tend to be environmental and emotional – exposure to environmental allergens is much easier to manage than anxiety, which is her primary emotional trigger. Because she tends to discount her acute and chronic anxiety as an asthma trigger, I have found that helping her connect the physiological changes associated with high anxiety to the physiological symptoms of asthma have helped her better manage her asthma.

Have a safe and allergy-free spring!

Related Posts

An Updated Look at the 2019 Magnet® Application Manual

This Nursing Excellence webinar revisits the 2019 Magnet Manual, including the addition of ADAM as the new document...

Read more
Engaging Baldrige and Magnet

Engaging Baldrige and Magnet to Accelerate Total Healthcare Excellence

This webinar presentation details a healthcare industry performance breakthrough that integrates and leverages Baldrige and...

Read more

About HealthLinx

HealthLinx® exists to create better outcomes through high-performing leadership and culture. We are a national project management firm that guides hospitals to achieve Leadership Excellence and Nursing Excellence.

Signup For Our Newsletter

Stay up-to-date with our valuable resources, services and announcements. Subscribe today!

RSS Feed


  • Case Studies
  • Magnet
  • Nursing Excellence
  • Organizational Excellence
  • Pathway
  • Permanent
  • Post
  • Press Release
  • Resources
  • Service Line Excellence
  • Transitional
  • Webinars
  • Whitepapers