National conference on allergy, asthma begins at Patel Chest

Saturday, Oct 22, 2016,16:12 IST By metrovaartha A A A

New Delhi | In the backdrop of rising cases of asthma and allergy-related ailments in developing nations, including India, health experts from the country and abroad have gathered here for a conference to deliberate over the issue and share the latest developments in the field.

The Indian College of Allergy, Asthma & Applied Immunology (ICAAI) is hosting a four-day golden jubilee conference, starting on Saturday, which has been organised by the Vallabhbhai Patel Chest Institute (VPCI).

“The main conference will begin from tomorrow and Union Minister Harsh Vardhan is slated to formally open it in the evening. Today, a workshop is being held to cover theoretical and practical aspects of skin prick test and immunotherapy,” a senior official of VPCI told PTI.

According to experts, it is estimated that over 20 per cent of the world’s population suffers from allergic diseases such as allergic asthma, allergic rhinitis and allergic conjunctivitis, atopic eczema and anaphylaxis.

Asthma is a worldwide problem, with estimated 300 million affected individuals and global prevalence which ranges from 1-18 per cent in different geographical regions.

“Studies suggest that the prevalence of asthma has been on the rise in developing countries in the past one decade.

Also, studies from several centres have reported that the prevalence of asthma in children in India ranged from 2.3-11.9 per cent, while in adults it ranged from 0.96-11.03 per cent,” according to VPCI.

The national conference would also discus the clinical and laboratory aspects of allergy, asthma and immunology, specially aimed towards the number of offending agents like air pollution, allergens and change in lifestyle in India and South Asia.

According to a recent WHO report, a few Indian cities, including Delhi, Patna and Gwalior were identified as among the severely polluted cities in the world.

The conference would have guest lectures by 12 international faculty from the US, the Netherlands, Germany and Sri Lanka. About 50 guest lectures will be delivered by distinguished faculty from India, the senior official said.

The conference will also have plenary lectures, symposia, guest lectures, panel discussions and original research paper presentation.

ICAAI was established in 1967 with its head quarter at the Vallabhbhai Patel Chest Institute.

VPCI or ‘Patel Chest’ as it is famously known as, is a maintained institute of the University of Delhi and funded by the Ministry of Health.

Starting as Institute of Tuberculosis, its foundation stone was laid by the then Deputy Prime Minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel April 6, 1949 and it was formally opened on January 12, 1953 by the then Union Health Minister Rajkumari Amrit Kaur.