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WHEREAS, the health and safety of all Virginians is important to the happiness, prosperity and well-being of our Commonwealth’s families and communities; and
WHEREAS, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a chronic inflammatory lung disease that causes airflow obstruction and breathing problems, including emphysema, chronic bronchitis, and asthma; and
WHEREAS, more than 16 million people in the United States have been diagnosed with COPD; and
WHEREAS, genetic and environmental risk factors, including exposure to air pollution, chemical dust, fumes, and tobacco smoke, can also cause the development of COPD; and
WHEREAS, early COPD screening and diagnosis is critical in order for doctors to prescribe appropriate medications to control the disease; and
WHEREAS, concentrated public efforts to improve public awareness of COPD are critical to reducing the prevalence of the disease and saving lives;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize November 2019 as CHRONIC OBSTRUCTIVE PULMONARY DISEASE AWARENESS MONTH in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.