Pneumonia acts as the single largest infectious killer of both children and adults with at least 2.5 million people each year succumbing to it. In fact, pneumonia is the world’s leading killer of children under the age of five years old.
Raising awareness about the fight against pneumonia, World Pneumonia Day aims to let everyone know that pneumonia is a preventable and treatable disease.
History of World Pneumonia Day
First established in 2009, World Pneumonia Day was founded by The Global Coalition Against Child Pneumonia. The purpose for the day was to educate and inform the public about the dangers of neglecting conditions that lead to or are related to pneumonia.
With more than 100 different organizations connected to it, World Pneumonia Day has been represented by Save the Children, the Global Health Council, and the Sabin Vaccine Institute, as well as supported by famous children’s ambassadors such as Gwyneth Paltrow and Hugh Laurie.
World Pneumonia Day offers the opportunity for people to get educated, raise awareness and fight for the needs of the children who are getting ill and dying from a preventable disease.
How to Celebrate World Pneumonia Day
Consider implementing some of these ideas and plans for observing World Pneumonia Day:
Get Educated About Pneumonia
One of the most important activities on World Pneumonia Day is for people to make sure they know enough to keep themselves and their children safe. This might include reading information offered at stoppneumonia.org, or heading to the local library to read some books on the topic.
Advocate for Cleaner Air
Many people do not know that air pollution is the leading risk factor for death from pneumonia. Since household air pollution is a huge problem, World Pneumonia Day would be a great time to invest in some personal air filters for the home. And it’s also a good time to contact local representatives and sign a petition to help clean up the outdoor air in the local community and the environment.
Share Some Facts About Pneumonia
As part of raising awareness, having a few easily accessible bits of information about pneumonia would be a good idea. That way, they can be shared at work or with friends to help them get connected with World Pneumonia Day as well. Consider sharing some of these important facts:
Pneumonia has a variety of causes. Infections in the lungs can be caused in at least 30 different ways, including air pollution, bacteria, fungus and more.
Pneumonia can be deadly if not treated. Particularly in small children, pneumonia needs to be treated immediately with care from a doctor and medicine.
Air quality affects pneumonia. Parents who smoke around children are putting them at risk. Another high risk is for children who live in places where homes are heated or cooking is done on open fires.
Breastfeeding may help prevent pneumonia. Children who are breastfed have their mother’s immunities, and breast milk also contains substances that keep pneumonia from growing in the baby’s nose, throat or lungs.