Asthma Research and Data

Asthma Research and Data

Minnesota Asthma Data

The Minnesota Department of Health Asthma Program has established an asthma surveillance system to better understand and describe the burden of asthma in Minnesota.  Tracking different aspects of asthma (such as the number of Minnesotans with the disease, rates of asthma-related hospitalizations and emergency department visits, quality of life, and mortality) provides important guides to planning education and intervention programs and to developing policies that are necessary for preventing and controlling asthma in the future.

For more information about asthma data and statistics, please contact Wendy Brunner, asthma program epidemiologist, at 651-201-5895 or

Available Information:

Review of Asthma Deaths Among Older Adults in Minnesota Conducted by the MDH Asthma Program

We conducted a review of asthma deaths among older adults in Minnesota and the results have been published in Volume 6: No. 3, July 2009 issue of CDC’s online journal, Preventing Chronic Disease.

In our study, we found that the majority of deaths among Minnesotans over age 55 that had been coded as asthma were in reality due to other causes.  We found that errors in completing death certificates, as well as difficulties in distinguishing asthma from other chronic respiratory conditions, like COPD, result in an overestimation of the number of asthma deaths in this age group.

Prior to this study, we were planning to target activities at preventing asthma deaths among seniors since the asthma mortality rate in that age group was higher than the national average.  Now we know that most of the deaths are probably not due to asthma, and that our efforts would be better focused on asthma morbidity rather than mortality in our senior population.

For more information about the study, please contact Wendy Brunner, asthma program epidemiologist, at 651-201-5895 or

Thursday, January 22, 2015 at 02:16PM