In response to the death of Stuart Baggs, former star of The Apprentice, from an asthma attack - Asthma UK have issued the following statement:
Dr Samantha Walker, Deputy Chief Executive of Asthma UK, says, "Our thoughts are with Stuart Baggs' family and friends at such a heart-breaking time. Many people don't realise how serious asthma is yet every ten seconds someone in the UK is having a potentially life threatening asthma attack and sadly three people die every day. I can't stress enough how important it is that people with asthma recognise the early warning signs of an asthma attack and know what to do when their symptoms are getting worse. Every person with asthma should have a written asthma action plan which helps them deal with worsening symptoms and what to do in an emergency. Without one, people are four times more likely to be admitted to hospital for their asthma. Anyone concerned about their asthma can call the Asthma UK Helpline on 0300 222 5800 to speak to a specialist asthma nurse or visit www.asthma.org.uk for more information."
Background information on asthma
- In the UK, 5.4 million people are currently receiving treatment for asthma: 1.1 million children (1 in 11) and 4.3 million adults (1 in 12).
- The UK has one of the highest prevalence rates for asthma in Europe, according to the ERS Whitebook.
- The UK has some of the highest asthma death rates in Western Europe according to the Death rates (all ages) for OECD nations and the World Health Organisation.
- Three people die every day because of asthma; based on mortality data from Office for National Statistics (ONS) for England & Wales, General Register Office for Scotland, and Northern Ireland Statistics Research Agency (Northern Ireland). 1255 people died from asthma in 2013 divided by 365, this works out as 3.4 people per day.
- Tragically, the National Review of Asthma Deaths found that two thirds of asthma deaths are preventable with good, basic care.
- 8 out of 10 people with asthma do not receive care that meets the most basic clinical standards according to research from Asthma UK (http://www.asthma.org.uk/News/time-to-take-action-on-asthma-care).