International Respiratory Coalition

National Projects

Find out how the IRC initiative is progressing at national level.

Active national-level IRC coalitions

There are currently 14 active national-level IRC coalitions. These coalitions have signed a shared memorandum of understanding. Though all are active, national coalitions are all at varying stages of progress. Find out more:

  • Austria

    More information coming soon.

  • Belgium

    The Belgian Respiratory Society (BeRS) and the Belgian Lung Foundation (BeLF) have established collaborations with different patient organisations, primary care organisations, and entities active in disease prevention, environmental protection and education. The Belgian coalition is currently building its membership and strengthening the structure of its group.

    Belgian Lung Foundation – Promoting lung health (

  • Croatia

    More information coming soon

  • France

    France have recently formed a national respiratory coalition to make lung health a priority in health policy. The coalition involves 30 organisations with a common ambition to raise awareness about the challenges of respiratory health and bring it higher up the agenda.

  • Greece

    More information coming soon

  • Israel

    More information coming soon

  • Italy



    Environment, pollution and climate change play an important role on people health, making the bond between environment and health indissoluble. For this reason SIP-IRS (Società Italiana di Pneumologia/Italian Respiratory Society) and AIPO-ITS (Associazione Italiana Pneumologi Ospedalieri/Italian Thoracic Society) started an awareness activity focused on environmental and respiratory disease.

    In partnership with Lega Ambiente about 300 trees have been planted in Catania and Bari: • 7 th November 2022, during the XXIII Congresso Nazionale della Pneumologia in Catania, at Bellini Theatre a talk show took place with the aim of making people aware about the risks connected to the occurrence of respiratory disease. 25th november 2022 the first 150 trees have been planted near Nicolosi (CT) • 28th March 2023 other 150 trees have been planted in San Francesco Park in Bari and the next 11th June at the XXIV Congresso Nazionale della Pneumologia Italiana – XLVII AIPO-ITS another talk show, with the aim of increasing awareness, is scheduled.

    A social spot on this theme has been realized and will be broadcasted on major Italian TV channels (Rai, Mediaset, Sky, La7).


    During the football championship 2023/2024 SIP-IRS and AIPO-ITS in partnership with Lega Serie A are promoting awareness activities in italian stadiums focused on respiratory disease.

    During a day of september/october 2023 SIP-IRS and AIPO will have these visibility opportunities:

    • Banner in the center of the football pitch
    • Social spot on stadium maxi-screens
    • Stadium Speaker announcement
    • Interviews on the football field



    SIP-IRS has developed over the years a strong relationship with patients’ associations.

    SIP-IRS in collaboration with AIPO-ITS is part of a project called “CONSULTA DELLA PNEUMOLOGIA”, which is a large group of delegates representing patients’ associations and other scientific societies with the aim of giving voice to patients and bringing media attention to local and national respiratory initiatives.

  • Netherlands

    More information coming soon

  • Turkey

    The Turkish Respiratory Coalition was established on March 22nd, 2023, based on International Respiratory Coalition initiation, to improve national lung health after the pandemic era. This establishment was led by two organizing national societies, namely the Turkish Thoracic Society and Turkish Respiratory Society, which have called to join all respiratory health-related organizations, including patient organizations. Twenty-two organizations were gathered to build a general assembly on June 5th, 2023. The main topics were then decided to establish working groups, including a monitoring board. Two hosting organizations have configured terms and conditions and agreement protocols.

    The aims of the Turkish Respiratory Coalition:

    • To establish national respiratory strategies, including prevention of the development of respiratory diseases, early diagnosis, appropriate and accessible treatment, new models of care, support for respiratory health-related research, ambitious measurable targets, and responsible leadership.
    • To protect and improve national lung health by promoting and monitoring the implementation of established national respiratory strategies.
    • In line with the sustainable development goals of the United Nations, it was determined to reduce death from lung diseases by one third by the end of 2030.
    • To develop professional, scientific, and social relations among coalition members by promoting a solid voice and concerted action and considering the highest ethical standards in all its activities.
  • Poland

    The Polish Healthy Lungs Coalition was established by the Polish Respiratory Society in December 2022. Five signatories from the pulmonary care sector joined together for the Coalition: The National Institute of Tuberculosis and Lung Diseases, The Polish Respiratory Society, The Polish Society of Pediatric Pneumonology, The National Consultant for Lung Diseases and the The National Consultant for Lung Diseases in Children.

    The coalition was formed in response to the urgent need to improve the availability and quality of lung disease diagnosis in Poland. Its goal is to support the creation of a Polish pulmonary strategy focusing on three areas: improving care for patients suffering from chronic respiratory diseases, improving lung health in the context of (post-) pandemic challenges and raising awareness about challenges related to respiratory health.

    The main goal of the Polish Coalition is to strengthen the systemic aspects of diagnosis and treatment of lung diseases in Poland, both from the perspective of the patient and the healthcare system.

    During the formation of the Coalition , the signatories officially signed a Declaration . The Declaration established the resolve to work together for the recognition of lung diseases and to make them a priority in Polish health policy.

    The coalition started its activities, among others, in the area of lung cancer. A debate was organised on the role of pulmonology in creating a national oncology network. The event involved the Minister of Health, the Parliamentary Health Committee, the Polish Lung Cancer Group, the Polish Thoracic Surgeons Club, the Polish Society of Pathologists, and the “To się leczy” Foundation.

    The coalition has concrete plans for further action and has already actively started the implementing its strategy.

  • Portugal

    We have formed a dedicated group comprising various organizations and experts to address respiratory disorders comprehensively, including prevention, diagnosis, and treatment. After analyzing national data, we have identified sleep apnea as a significant national problem that requires immediate attention. Consequently, we have chosen to focus on sleep disorders as a starting point.

    The group consists of esteemed organizations, namely the Portuguese Society of Pneumology, the National Program for Respiratory Diseases, the Lung Foundation, the Portuguese Association of People with COPD and other Chronic Respiratory Diseases – RESPIRA. Additionally, we are fortunate to have the expertise of a journalism professor from Minho University within our group.

    Following our initial meetings, we have commenced work on the first draft of our project. The primary objective of this project is to develop a strategic framework that will enhance the response to respiratory disorders, with a specific focus on sleep apnea, given its national prevalence and impact. Our strategy will be meticulously piloted, evaluated, and refined before being scaled up and implemented nationwide.

    By leveraging the expertise and resources of our collaborative group, we aim to address the challenges faced by individuals affected by respiratory disorders, ensuring improved prevention, diagnosis, and treatment options. By starting with sleep apnea, a nationally recognized problem identified through our thorough analysis of national data, we hope to impact the overall respiratory health of the population significantly.

  • Romania

    More information coming soon.

  • Spain

    More information coming soon

  • United Kingdom

    The Taskforce for Lung Health is a unique collaboration of over 40 patient and carer representatives, health care professionals, charities, professional bodies and other experts looking to improve lung health in England.

    Our mission is to prevent more people from developing lung disease, and to transform the care of people living with respiratory conditions.

    An Industries Forum, which works alongside the Taskforce, includes representatives from the pharmaceutical, diagnostics, devices and digital industries.

    The Taskforce operates three working groups – Medicines Optimisation, Diagnosis, and Workforce – each focused on a key element of improving respiratory healthcare.

    The Taskforce recently published Our plan: four years on, highlighting progress made to date. 2022 was a challenging year with both political and economic uncertainty and change, but there have been several welcome developments that will make a real difference for people with lung conditions, including:

    • NHS England’s new pre-diagnosis breathlessness pathway to ensure people with lung conditions receive clear and appropriate information about what to expect at each stage throughout their patient journey
    • Nintedanib having its eligibility expanded to people living with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis, enabling thousands of additional people living with this incurable disease to access a drug which can slow the progression of the disease
    • Targeted national lung cancer screening programme being recommended by the UK National Screening Committee to be rolled out nationally for the first time for people at high risk,  which has the potential to save thousands of lives


    While this progress is welcome, the work of Taskforce is far from over. This year, we will be continuing to push for improvements and change through our three working groups and the Taskforce more widely. Key priorities will include:

    • Spirometry – Increasing access to spirometry lung function testing so that everyone gets a quick and accurate diagnosis
    • Inhaler technique checks – Improving inhaler techniques to ensure people with lung conditions are confident using their medication
    • Community Pharmacy – Making full use of community pharmacy to help people manage their lung conditions better
    • Workforce – Ensuring the right medical professionals are in place to meet the needs of respiratory patients now and in the future


    As ever, we owe our success to those that dedicate their time and insight to support the Taskforce and drive our work forward. The commitment of our Taskforce, Industries Forum and working groups members creates invaluable discussion and spurs on real progress. We are especially grateful to our patient and carer representatives, whose contributions highlight the importance of Taskforce’s mission and give vital focus to all the work we do.