Pollution and flu bring steep rise in lung-related illnesses Shortage of specialists adds to worries that surge in respiratory diseases is putting pressure on A&Es
Accident and emergency departments have seen attendances due to lung-related illnesses almost double in under a decade as increasingly virulent flu strains and a rise in air pollution take their toll.
A shortage of lung specialists means services can be patchy, with some respiratory teams over-stretched, however. The huge increase is adding to the significant pressures on hospitals, especially during the winter months, and has prompted calls for a new national strategy to tackle the problem that the British Lung Foundation estimates costs the UK economy £11bn a year.
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