Amsterdam, the Netherlands – Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHI) announced today its partnership with the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD), on the occasion of World Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Day. According to the World Health Organization, COPD afflicts some 50 million people around the world, and kills nearly 3 million every year. In addition, COPD is greatly under-diagnosed, with recent studies indicating that 25% to 50% of clinically significant COPD cases remain undetected. Philips will become an active member of the GOLD initiative by sponsoring and contributing to the education of primary care physicians and patients.
“Philips is proud to partner with GOLD. We are convinced that the collaboration will provide a mutual platform for improved access to treatment for COPD patients,” comments Brent Shafer, Executive Vice President Philips Home Healthcare Solutions. “We are committed to providing a complete range of solutions from drug delivery, oxygen therapy and ventilation, to optimize the management of COPD patients.”
As part of its focus on delivering innovative and meaningful solutions, Philips recently unveiled the new UltraFill home oxygen filling system in the US, allowing respiratory patients to manage their home oxygen system in a simpler way. The new system combines a stationary oxygen concentrator, 200 bar cylinder filling station, and long-lasting dispensing cylinders to cost-effectively meet the needs of a wide range of oxygen patients, including those who are highly active or require continuous flow oxygen. The UltraFill home oxygen filling system will soon be available in Europe.
In patients suffering from COPD, the airways of the lungs become narrowed, causing a limitation of the flow of air to and from the lungs and shortness of breath. In the initial phase of the disease, patients mostly suffer from breathlessness during physical effort, but as the disease progresses breathlessness also occurs during everyday activities.
“Lifestyle management plays an important role in the treatment of the condition. However, it is vital to provide COPD sufferers with comprehensive treatment options. In addition to the UltraFill oxygen filling systems, Philips provides a range of other devices which can be used to optimize drug delivery in COPD patients, as well as a complete range of oxygen concentrators for COPD treatment”, concluded Brent Shafer.
The GOLD initiative (www.goldcopd.com) was launched in 1997 in collaboration with such leading groups as the World Health Organization, with the objective of raising COPD awareness globally. As part of its mission, GOLD focuses on decreasing morbidity and mortality from COPD through the implementation and evaluation of effective programs for diagnosis and management. Philips shares with GOLD a commitment to improve COPD patients’ access to treatment throughout the world.