Asthma Capitals for 2015

Asthma Capitals for 2015
Each year the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) creates a list of U.S. asthma capitals; these are the worst cities in the U.S. for those with asthma. This study is one of the most comprehensive of its kind to evaluate asthma prevalence in the country’s largest cities. The asthma capital list is available online in as a PDF (see the link at the end of this article) from the AAFA.

Data Factors
Each city is ranked using the following factors:

Prevalence factors: estimated asthma prevalence (percentage of adults and children who have asthma), self-reported prevalence (percentage of people who reported living with asthma) and crude death rates (percentage of adults and children who die from asthma).

Risk factors: data on annual pollen measurements (reported pollen counts for each city), average length of peak pollen seasons, outdoor air quality (including pollution levels and the number of unhealthy outdoor ozone days), poverty rates, uninsured rates (percentage of those who have no health insurance), state school inhaler access laws, public smoking bans (the number of public smoking laws in effect).

Medical factors: the number of ER visits for asthma per 10,000 patients, number of asthma rescue and controller medication prescriptions per patient, and the number of allergy & immunology and/or pulmonary doctors in an area (the number of doctors who are Board Certified allergists/immunologists and/or pulmonologists).

Top 25 Asthma Capitals 2015
Here are the top 25 asthma capitals for 2015; note that being #1 on the list means that city is the worst place for asthma suffers, while being last on the AAFA's list means your city's not as bad for asthmatics. This year, Memphis takes first place as the U.S. Asthma Capital for 2015.

1). Memphis, Tennessee
2). Richmond, Virginia
3). Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
4). Detroit, Michigan
5). Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
6). Augusta, Georgia
7). Knoxville, Tennessee
8). Chattanooga, Tennessee
9). New Orleans, Louisiana
10). Chicago, Illinois
11). Indianapolis, Indiana
12). New Haven, Connecticut
13). Fresno, California
14). Providence, Rhode Island
15). Tulsa, Oklahoma
16). Atlanta, Georgia
17). McAllen, Texas
18). Dayton, Ohio
19). Allentown, Pennsylvania
20). Cleveland, Ohio
21). Louisville, Kentucky
22). Milwaukee, Wisconsin
23). Springfield, Massachusetts
24). Toledo, Ohio
25). Jacksonville, Florida

Top 10 Asthma Capitals 2014
You can compare with this year's list with the asthma capitals from 2014:

1). Richmond, Virginia
2). Memphis, Tennessee
3). McAllen, Texas
4). Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
5). Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
6). Chattanooga, Tennessee
7). Fresno, California
8). Tulsa, Oklahoma
9). Chicago, Illinois
10). Detroit, Michigan

My City is on the List: Should I Move?
The AAFA advises asthma patients not to move to a new area or region if you have allergies and asthma. If you have allergies, there’s a high chance you’ll develop new, additional allergies in a new location. There is no way to predict if a move to a new location will improve your allergies and asthma. In some instances, a move may be beneficial, but for most people the AAFA advises, “Don’t move—improve.”

This Report is a Helpful Tool
The annual U.S. Asthma Capitals report makes a helpful tool for you and your doctor. You’ll gain a better understanding of asthma issues in your area; for instance, you may learn your city has high ozone levels during the summer. You may also learn that your city has high pollen levels in the spring and fall. With this information, your doctor will be able to tailor a more precise action plan to keep your asthma more stable. This leads to better asthma management and a healthier you.

You can find the top AAFA’s 100 U.S. Asthma Capitals list here: (Just copy and paste the URL into your browser's address bar and hit 'enter.')

Please check out my new book Asthma’s Nothing to Wheeze At!

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