AANMA Hosting Annual Awareness Day on Capitol Hill to Advocate for Patient Rights

Allergy & Asthma Network Mothers of Asthmatics Asks Congress to Protect Patients From Fraud and Continue Supporting Allergy and Asthma Funding

May 05, 2014, 12:59 ET from Allergy & Asthma Network Mothers of Asthmatics

WASHINGTON, May 5, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- For the 17th year in a row, Allergy & Asthma Network Mothers of Asthmatics (AANMA) will gather for the annual Allergy & Asthma Day Capitol Hill (AADCH) [http://www.aanma.org/aadch] on Wednesday, May 7 to put forth core issues that the 50 million Americans suffering from these chronic conditions face every day, and urge Congress to take action against them.  

"A person whose asthma is under control can go to work or school, exercise, and participate fully in life," says Tonya Winders, AANMA President and CEO. "Dealing with a chronic illness is complicated and expensive. By highlighting hot button issues and challenges people face every day, we get closer to helping America breathe better, one family at a time."

AANMA's foremost issue to be presented to Congress is deception, fraud and abuse involving allergy care. Allergy testing and immunotherapy schemes continue to pop up in primary care offices across the country, exposing patients and families to substandard care as well as fraud and abuse of insurance payers. These deceptive practices of "pseudo-specialists" can endanger allergy and asthma sufferers and the community at large with false diagnosis and improper treatment to patients who seek symptom relief.

AANMA urges Congress to investigate these deceptive business practices to help protect patients and their families. On May 7 at AADCH, advocates will ask members of Congress to sign a letter asking the Federal Trade Commission and several other regulatory organizations to investigate the deceptive practices thousands are exposed to every day.

Other topics to be discussed at AADCH involve over-the-counter asthma medications and self-diagnosis of allergy and asthma conditions. AANMA will reinforce the message, "Asthma is not easy to self-diagnose or self-treat." Advocates will ask Congress to encourage FDA to prohibit asthma medications from becoming available over-the-counter. By doing so, Congress will reinforce the need for chronic disease management to be rooted in the physician-patient relationship and will protect patients from dangerous unintended consequences of delayed access to care.

Lastly, patients and families will share their stories of how allergies and asthma impact their daily lives. AANMA and patients will urge Congress to continue funding programs like CDC's National Asthma Control Program and EPA's Indoor Air Program in order to continue educating the public about how to control symptoms and live well with these chronic conditions.

AANMA is the leading voice and patient advocate for more than 50 million Americans with allergies and 25 million with asthma. During Allergy & Asthma Day Capitol Hill, AANMA will bring together members of Congress and their staff, families impacted by allergy and asthma, and health care professionals, each of whom share one common goal – to end the needless death and suffering due to asthma, allergies and related conditions.

Allergy & Asthma Day Capitol Hill – May 7, 2014

Congressional Press Breakfast Briefing
9:00 – 10:00 am, Rayburn House Office Building
Room B2168 (Gold Room)

Speakers include:

  • Michael Foggs, MD, president of the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, on the Nationwide Asthma Screening Program
  • Dr. Judy Qualters, Director, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, on the impact of allergy and asthma in the United States
  • Tracey Mitchell, Environmental Protection Agency, on www.asthmacommunitynetwork.org website
  • Janet Phoenix, Director of Breathe DC, a local program to reduce asthma burden
  • Patients and families

AADCH Sponsors
American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology; American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology; Genentech; GlaxoSmithKline; MEDA US; Mylan Specialty LP; Sanofi U.S.; TEVA Respiratory; Thermo Fisher Scientific

Allergy & Asthma Network Mothers of Asthmatics (AANMA) is the leading national nonprofit organization dedicated to ending needless death and suffering due to asthma, allergies and related conditions. AANMA specializes in sharing family-friendly, medically accurate information through its award-winning publications Allergy & Asthma Today magazine, E-newsletter and numerous community outreach programs. www.aanma.org

Contact: Gary Fitzgerald

SOURCE Allergy & Asthma Network Mothers of Asthmatics