Killer chest disease plea

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AN MP is calling for more funding and better support for victims of chest disease, which is a top killer in South Yorkshire because of the area’s strong mining and heavy industrial heritage.

John Healey has written to the Health Secretary after learning that funding for Respiratory Programme Boards – specialist groups which work together to improve services and survival rates – will be stopped from March next year.

In Rotherham, one in seven deaths is from respiratory disease and the number of life years lost to asthma is 3.3 - twice the England average. In Barnsley, chest disease is the third most common cause of death and the number of children with asthma being admitted to hospital in an emergency is significantly higher than the national average.