Advocacy

Advocacy is a key component to advancing the priorities of lung health. Through our determined advocacy efforts, policies and bills have been successfully implemented to improve lung health and protection.

For over 100 years the Lung Association of Nova Scotia has been advocating for all Nova Scotians, because no one should ever have to struggle to breathe.
 
Advocacy work can take place at many levels and can be done by people of all ages. All you need is a desire for change and the willingness to use your voice. Each time you speak up on an issue that is important to you, you are advocating. In order to create an effective voice for change we need this support. We want your voice with ours and we want to hear your stories.

 

Advocacy Work

Lung health is complex and requires ongoing advocacy efforts. From lung transplants, vaccination and COPD to smoking, vaping and radon, there are a variety of lung health issues that we continue to take action on. Continue reading to learn more about recent lung health accomplishments and current initiatives.

Tobacco & Smoking

Tobacco is the number one cause of preventable death in Canada and is the number one cause of lung disease. These stats have made tobacco control our number one priority. We continue to advocate for better policies and resources to fight tobacco.​

  • Proactive towards getting tobacco flavors banned, tobacco taxes increased, and plain packaging implemented, while also playing an active role in advocating for menthol bans in tobacco products.

  • Advocated for the provision of prescription cessation aids in the NS formulary such as Champix and Zyban.

  • Strongly supported plain packaging at the Federal level as an active participant in Tobacco Endgame.

  • Hosted the first-ever tobacco control symposium to address smoking rates in Nova Scotia. This event was successful in uniting health professionals and providing input for further tobacco control action.

 

Vaping

Vaping has become a youth epidemic that desperately needs attention and control. Vape reduction has become a high priority for lung health as it is leading youth into smoking and many long-term effects of vaping are still unknown.

  • Supported the the conduction of a national youth vaping survey to help inform policy around youth vaping.

  • Presented to the Nova Scotia Standing Committee on Health, providing research-based recommendations to address youth vaping. As a result, flavours have been banned, taxes on vaping products have been increased and a cap on nicotine content has been implemented.

  • Continue to be proactive in the media, distributing messaging and supporting government in the legislation that they have passed.

  • Partnered with several schools across Nova Scotia to provide them with messages and posters for their students related to vaping.

 

Lung Transplant 

Lung transplants are lifesaving surgeries that involve a great deal of courage and support to undertake. We continue to be involved in providing support for those undergoing or requiring lung transplants.

  • Played an instrumental role in getting monthly funding from the department of health and wellness increased from $1500 to $2500 per month for patients who must travel out-of-province for lung transplant surgery. 

 

COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) 

COPD is the fourth leading causing of death and is the number one lung health issue that Canadians face. We continue to advocate for more supports, further research and continued implementation of preventative measures to tackle the devastations of COPD.

  • Completed a comprehensive assessment of COPD prevention and treatment services which resulted in a report to government, outlining suggestions for improvement. Our recommendation to adopt the Atlantic Common Drug Review was successfully implemented.

  • Hosted a COPD policy forum to discuss the COPD care model and how to make improvements to COPD care in Nova Scotia. This was the first time that Nova Scotia had a forum focused on COPD with both government officials and political leaders present to discuss COPD care.

  • In collaboration with INSPIRED, a leading innovative approach to healthcare, we are working hand-in-hand to increase accessibility of this program for COPD patients​.

 

Radon Gas

  • An active member of the provincial radon working group, working on initiatives that create greater awareness about the risks of radon gas. 

  • Worked with provincial and federal levels of government to create a radon detector library loan program to help educate the public about the dangers of radon gas.

  • Actively advocating for the requirement of all daycares to test for radon before being licensed.

 

Vaccination

Individuals with pre-existing lung health issues are more susceptible to encountering health complications if they contract the flu. Therefore, providing vaccinations and informing individuals of their importance is something we continue to do.

  • Hosted flu awareness campaigns to educate the public about the importance of flu vaccinations, and NACI’s (National Advisory Committee on Immunization) position regarding the high-dose flu vaccine for seniors.

  • Continue to enforce the importance of high-dose flu vaccines for Nova Scotians 65 years old and over to the public and government through ongoing education.

 

Lung Cancer

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer related deaths in Canada and its prevention and control continues to be a priority.

  • Actively working to evaluate the lung cancer care pathway. This study is focused on the patient's journey, from the ability to receive early screening, and their journey through treatment.

  • Advocate for the provision of early screening for lung cancer.

 

Our Memberships

We see value in being involved in multiple communities that work to address and protect against lung health issues. By working with other organizations and showing support we can help provide our expertise as well as create a louder voice for change and action.

  • Member of the Nova Scotia Chronic Disease group

  • Member of Smoke-Free Nova Scotia

  • Member of provincial radon working group

Page Last Updated: 26/11/2020