Posted July 3, 2012
As communities in the Northeast brace for unhealthy air pollution levels this week, the American Lung Association launched a free State of the Air smartphone application to help people monitor whether their air is safe to breathe.
This tool, which is available for Apple and Android, can be a valuable resource for people living with lung disease such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, people with heart disease or diabetes, as well as older adults and children.
The app is also useful for those working outdoors and those planning outdoor activities such as hiking, biking or running.
“The American Lung Association has been fighting for air for more than 100 years. Air pollution threatens the health of millions in the Northeast alone. For the next couple of days, our region is facing temperatures nearing triple digits; with these increased temperatures, comes the increased threat of hazardous levels of ozone pollution,” said Jeff Seyler, president and chief executive officer of the American Lung Association of the Northeast.
Despite continued improvements in air quality, unhealthy levels of air pollution still exist in communities across the country. According to the Lung Association’s State of the Air 2012 report released in April, more than 127.2 million people live in U.S. counties with dangerous levels of ozone or particle pollution, the two most widespread air pollutants.
The State of the Air app enables users to enter their zip code or use the geolocator function to get current air quality conditions and the next-day air quality forecast. The app tracks levels of both ozone and particle pollution, and pushes out alerts if local air quality is code orange — unhealthy for sensitive groups — or worse. Depending on the severity of the day’s air pollution, the app will provide vital health recommendations.
This air quality information is based on data made available to the public by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
The American Lung Association app is available for Apple in iTunes and for Android in Google Play or at lung.org/ stateoftheairapp.Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Maine announces release of 2011 community benefits report