Asthma Statistics


Ireland is now ranked among the top four countries in the world with the highest prevalence rates for asthma. The Asthma Society of Ireland has estimated that 274,000 people suffer from asthma in Ireland. Asthma affects at least 1 in 7 Irish children, and 1 in 20 adults.

The first major study to investigate the impact of asthma in Irish households is currently being undertaken. The study, involving 5,000 households, is a collaboration between the Asthma Society of Ireland and Allen & Hanburys, and is an Irish extension of the AIRE study - Asthma Insights and Realities in Europe - already conducted in seven EU countries. A preliminary audit has revealed a huge impact on quality of life. Of those surveyed:

Other findings of the preliminary audit included:

United Kingdom

(1) 2001 Asthma Audit

The UK has one of the highest prevalence rates for asthma in the world, along with New Zealand, Australia and Ireland. The 2001 Asthma Audit by the National Asthma Campaign provided a higher estimate of the number of people suffering with asthma in the UK then ever before. The Audit estimated that 5.1 million people - 1 in 13 adults and 1 in 8 children - are currently being treated for asthma. The Campaign's previous audit in 1999 estimated the figure at 3.4 million. Nobody knows for sure why asthma is becoming more common, but it is thought to be due to a complex combination of genetic and environmental factors. Serious or life-threatening asthma results in 74,000 emergency hospital admissions each year. Currently, 1,500 people die from asthma each year, over a third of which are people under the age of 65.

Other statistics and findings from the 2001 Asthma Audit included:

(2) 2002 Asthma Audit

The 2002 Asthma Audit by the National Asthma Campaign was an audit of children's asthma in the UK. The findings included:

(3) AIRE study 1999

The UK took part in the AIRE study - Asthma Insights and Realities in Europe - in 1999. Four hundred interviews with eligible asthma sufferers were undertaken in each country including the UK. The AIRE study described the current state of patients knowledge, their attitudes and behaviour towards asthma. The survey indicated that the current level of asthma control in Western Europe, including the UK, falls far short of guideline recommendations for long-term management.

The AIRE results for the UK included:

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