Pulmonary Hypertension Association Urges Support for Senate Bill to Improve Diagnosis and Accelerate Research for a Progressive, Life-threatening Lung Disease

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U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) this week introduced the Pulmonary Hypertension Research and Diagnosis Act (S. 3361), giving new hope to people suffering from a life-threatening often misdiagnosed lung disease.

U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) this week introduced the Pulmonary Hypertension Research and Diagnosis Act (S. 3361), giving new hope to people suffering from a life-threatening often misdiagnosed lung disease.

Pushed by PH patients, caregivers, family members and healthcare professionals, a similar House bill (HR 3520), introduced by Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX) and Rep. Lois Capps (D-CA), is gaining bipartisan momentum with 57 co-sponsors. Sen. Casey announced that the Senate bill already has one co-sponsor, Sen. Angus King [I-ME].

PH is increased pressure in the blood vessels of the lungs that can lead to death from right heart failure. Common symptoms include shortness of breath, fatigue and chest pain. Consequently, the disease is often misdiagnosed, for example, as asthma, leading to delays in proper diagnosis and treatment and costing patients valuable time.

This budget-neutral legislation establishes a five-year Interagency Pulmonary Hypertension Coordinating Committee. The Coordinating Committee will streamline federal resources and healthcare-related PH activities and develop a strategic plan to improve health outcomes for PH. The bill requires a series of reports to Congress on PH and the progress being made to address the impact of this disease.

“With this disease, awareness is a matter of life or death; the success of current therapies depends on an early and accurate PH diagnosis,” Sen. Casey said. “This bill creates efficiencies at the federal level to support the work that PHA has done over the past 25 years to advance care and awareness in its efforts to support and bring together the PH patient, healthcare professional and research communities.”

PHA member patients, caregivers, healthcare professionals and others in the PH community will lobby their senators to join Sen. Casey as cosponsors.

About the Pulmonary Hypertension Association

Headquartered in Silver Spring, Md., the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) is the country’s leading pulmonary hypertension organization. Commemorating its 25th anniversary in 2016, PHA’s mission is to extend and improve the lives of those affected by PH; its vision is a world without PH, empowered by hope. PHA achieves this by connecting and working together with the entire PH community of patients, families; healthcare professionals and researchers. For more information and to learn how you can support PH patients, visit http://www.PHAssociation.org and connect with PHA on Twitter @PHAssociation and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/PulmonaryHypertensionAssociation.

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Kelly Williams
@PHAssociation
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