"Do You Have Allergies?
Let’s Follow Together the Road of Allergy Prevention and Control”
On the 10th of May 2016, in the University Hospital "Alexandrovska" in Sofia was launched the Bulgarian National Awareness Campaign "Do You Have Allergies? Let’s Follow Together the Road of Allergy Prevention and Control”. The main objective of the campaign is to raise allergy and asthma awareness in the Bulgarian society, as well as to promote methods for their prevention, early diagnosis, treatment and control. The event was organized by the Bulgarian Society of Allergology, together with the patient organization - the Association of the Bulgarians suffering from Bronchial Asthma, Allergies and COPD (ABBA, part of EFA), and with the kind support of the University Hospital "Alexandrovska", the Medical University of Sofia, the National Health Committee of the 43rd National Assembly of the Republic of Bulgaria and the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (EAACI).
The discussion forum started with an allergy exhibition and a press conference, during which fruitful conversations with journalists and patients were conducted: searching a better way to prevent and manage allergic diseases in Bulgaria. Public figures and Bulgarian politicians joined the event and supported the cause with their faces and their willingness to fight the Allergy Epidemic.
All of the participants had the opportunity to be skin-prick tested with common inhalant and food allergens and to receive an expert advice. Lung function by means of spirometry and exhaled breath temperature was tested, as well. The guests of the event visited the allergy exhibition and had the chance to get familiar with the Bulgarian pollen calendar and see the most common allergens under a microscope (domestic mites, moulds, pollen seeds).
The video "Do You Have Allergies? Let’s Follow Together the Road of Allergy Prevention and Control” was introduced to the public during the press conference. This video is a joint project of the Bulgarian Society of Allergology, medical professionals, patients and institutions for a better public awareness of the significant socio-economical implications of allergies and asthma in Bulgaria.
At the end of the forum all participants and public figures were invited to join the symbolic act of planting trees in the park of the University Hospital “Alexandrovska”. Each tree carried different allergy awareness message.
The event in Sofia had a wide-spread media and public impact and succeeded to achieve its primary aim to raise awareness on the burden of allergic diseases amongst Bulgarian policy-makers and the Bulgarian society.
The second stop on the road of allergy prevention was held on the 18th of May in the city of Stara Zagora – one of the most polluted areas in our country. Meetings with local journalists were organized, as well as patient consultations. A great number of people had the chance to be examined and received expert advice.
The Bulgarian National Allergy Awareness Campaign "Do You Have Allergies? Let’s Follow Together the Road of Allergy Prevention and Control” will take place in the period May-December 2016, with regional press conferences and open doors to patients in 9 Bulgarian cities in different geographic areas – Sofia, Stara Zagora, Berkovitsa, Montana, Burgas, Pernik, Rousse, Plovdiv and Petrich. During the campaign skin-prick testing for aero- and food allergens will be conducted, as well as spirometries. The participants will be provided with relevant medical advice about their health condition. Results will be summarized at the end of 2016.
Main objectives of the campaign:
1. To raise social awareness about:
- The need for epidemiological studies to assess the true burden of allergic diseases in Bulgaria
- The need to implement appropriate environmental control measures to reduce triggers and risk factors for allergies and asthma like smoking and outdoor pollutants, and develop adequate preventative measures
- The need to assist the access of patients to well-trained medical personnel in order have better diagnosis and treatment of the allergic diseases, as well as to make steps towards better availability and affordability of drugs
- Need to make efforts to increase public awareness and work towards developing innovative preventative strategies.
- Development and implementation of an adequate National Allergy Prevention Programme
- Development and participation in larger EU-funded projects on allergic diseases and asthma
- Positioning Allergy and Asthma at the forefront of the Bulgarian Chronic Diseases policies
- Promotion and introduction of allergy preventive measures among medical personnel, patients and non-governmental organizations
- Enhancing the partnership of allergists with the patient organizations and the Bulgarian community
1. The videos of the campaign can be found in the following link:
2. photos from the campaign can be found in the following link: