The implications for practice and policy of new national prevalence data
In this issue of the Journal, Toelle and colleagues provide up-to-date information about obstructive lung diseases in Australia in their report on the Australian arm of the Burden of Obstructive Lung Disease (BOLD) study.1 The BOLD study is an international collaboration comparing rates of obstructive lung disease in people aged 40 years or older in 12 countries. Sydney’s place in this international league table was reported previously,2 but now we have access to Australia-wide data, with six sites chosen specifically to ensure adequate representation of the states and territories and, importantly, to include Indigenous groups. Given that the overall participation rate in this study was only 27%, it is possible that the disease burden may be greater or less than estimated, but these data nevertheless allow more robust international comparisons than have previously been possible.
Publication of your online response is subject to the Medical Journal of Australia's editorial discretion. You will be notified by email within five working days should your response be accepted.