Grace Anne Dorney Koppel & Ted Koppel Raise Awareness for COPD on CBS Morning News

Many of you may know Ted Koppel as the former anchor of Nightline but you may not know his wife Grace Anne Dorney Koppel. Grace Anne was diagnosed with COPD in 2001 and has served as the national patient advocate for the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to increase awareness of COPD.

On November 20th Gayle King interviewed the couple on CBS This Morning and they shared their journey with COPD

They emphasized the need for increased access to pulmonary rehab, early screening for COPD and significant lack of funding for COPD. They discussed how COPD is the 3rd leading cause of death after heart disease and cancer yet it is #155 on the list of funding from the National Institutes of Health and that there are roughly 30 million Americans affected by COPD yet only 3% have access to pulmonary rehabilitation.

Grace Anne talked about her initial symptoms of shortness of breath and how she thought she had a “rare disease” and when diagnosed with COPD back in 2001, she was told that she only had months to live. Now, sixteen years after that devastating news, she spoke with encouragement that while the disease is not curable, with proper treatment and pulmonary rehabilitation, COPD is treatable. At the end of the six minute interview, Grace Anne encouraged anyone with symptoms of regular cough, shortness of breath, wheezing or a history of smoking or an occupation with exposure to fumes, dust or vapors to see their physician and be screened.

Ted Koppel spoke about the reason he and his wife decided to do this story in a recent press release from the U.S. COPD Coalition:

“We both believe that empowering patients and educating the public is vital. This is key to getting support for the COPD National Action Plan both in the COPD community, in the public at large, in the halls of our elected officials. This is also an opportunity to reach millions of viewers and introduce them to Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease and the COPD National Action Plan.

Don’t miss the next segment!! Tune in today, Sunday, November 26th, 9:00 am (EST) to CBS Sunday Morning, the Koppels will be back again with a 12-minute segment on COPD.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The COPD.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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