Breathe Better – Live Better: Improving the Quality of Life for People with COPD

Mississauga Halton community partners have launched a critical education program to support people with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

Mississauga (February 22, 2013) – The new Mississauga Halton Community Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Education Program or Breathe Better – Live Better is providing education and support for people with COPD to manage their condition and improve their quality of life.

The Mississauga Halton Local Health Integration Network(LHIN) in partnership with GlaxoSmithKline, PRIISME®, Trillium Health Partners, Halton Healthcare Services, the Mississauga Halton Community Care Access Centre (CCAC), the City of Mississauga, the Town of Milton and the Town of Oakville have collaborated to ensure patients with COPD – a long-term lung disease often caused by smoking and including chronic bronchitis and emphysema – have access to necessary supports in their communities while reducing emergency department visits and hospital admissions through better management of this disease. 

Individuals with COPD who have not had access to respiratory programs offered in some of the family health care practices within the Mississauga Halton LHIN have had to access these programs through hospitals when needed. Clients with mild to moderate COPD can now learn how to self-manage this condition at convenient community locations that are easily accessible, on a public transit route and offer free parking. 

“We have worked with community and recreation centres in Mississauga, Milton and Oakville to establish education programs at four easily accessible locations where active living programs already exist. We encourage participants to engage in a healthier lifestyle which helps manage COPD,” said Registered Respiratory Therapist and Certified Respiratory Educator Neeta Fraser. Fraser conducts assessments, works on self-management plans with clients and helps them better understand disease progression, risk factors (including smoking cessation), COPD medication and the benefits of regular exercise.  

According to the Ontario Lung Association, “Approximately 780,000 Ontarians are living with COPD and it is estimated that an equal number remain undiagnosed” while in the Mississauga Halton LHIN, the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES) stated the prevalence of COPD to be over 42,000 cases in 2009/10. 

“Putting the right programs and supports in place is critical to help patients with COPD manage this chronic condition, ensuring better access in our Mississauga Halton community and more resources for patients to cope effectively and prevent further complications,” said Bill MacLeod, CEO of the Mississauga Halton LHIN.

The Mississauga Halton COPD Education Program is providing that vital knowledge for clients to improve, prevent and manage this condition and ultimately, breathe better and live better.




“I have a phobia about hospitals and medical clinics, so accessing this education program at my local community centre has been a big help. I am now aware of the tools available to me to help cope with my COPD such as exercise, proper nutrition, education to help correctly use smoking cessation tools, and a support network. This has been a total lifestyle change for me.  I walk three times a week, jog twice and have added weights and stretching which allows me to include something in my daily routine to keep me focused. I’m staying the course and the quality of my life is improving every day.” 

—Glenn Hayes, Breathe Better – Live Better program participant


 “Providing education, support and better access to health care is a priority. The work of the Mississauga Halton LHIN, together with their partners, is making an important difference in the quality of life for patients living with COPD and their families in our community.” 

— Charles Sousa, MPP Mississauga South 


“I always believe that providing better access is a priority for better health care. This program is an excellent support system for people with COPD and will improve the quality of life for them and their families.”

—Dipika Damerla, MPP for Mississauga East-Cooksville


"On behalf of Regional Council, I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of those involved in today's official launch of Breathe Better – Live Better..."  Read full message 

—Gary Carr, Regional Chair



Breathe Better – Live Better 

  • Physician referral is required to attend the Breathe Better – Live Better program.
  • Breathe Better – Live Better locations in the community: 


Huron Park Recreation Centre

830 Paisley Blvd W, Mississauga

When: Thursdays


Rivergrove Community Centre

5800 River Grove Ave, Mississauga

When: Tuesdays


Milton Sports Centre

605 Santa Maria Blvd, Milton

When: Wednesdays


Queen Elizabeth Park Community and Cultural Centre

2302 Bridge Rd, Oakville

When: Mondays



According to the Ontario Lung Association’s Your Lungs, Your Life Report:

  • Today, more than 780,000 Ontarians are living with COPD, or 5.9 per cent of the population. Almost half of all cases are severe or very severe.
  • Every day, an average of 150 new cases of COPD is reported in Ontario. By 2041 this number is expected to increase to 215 per day.
  • By 2041, the number of people who will die with COPD as a contributing factor is expected to grow to more than 57,000 people – or 157 deaths per day.
  • COPD is estimated to cost the Ontario healthcare system $3.3 billion in 2011. Within a generation, the cumulative cost to the healthcare system will exceed $172.3 billion.


According to ICES’ Incidence of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Ontario 1996/97 to 2009/10:

  • Table 4. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Age and Sex Adjusted Prevalence Rates for the Mississauga Halton LHIN indicates 42,383 cases in 2009/10 within the specified population.


The Mississauga Halton LHIN 

  • Breathe Better – Live Better aligns with the Mississauga Halton LHIN’s Integrated Health Service Plan 2013-2016 “Partnering for a Healthier Tomorrow”.
  • Chronic conditions currently account for six out of 10 deaths in the Mississauga Halton LHIN community and one-quarter of all acute hospital days.
  • The Mississauga Halton LHIN continues to focus efforts to ensure we are providing the right care in the right place at the right time.
  • Mississauga Halton LHIN serves the communities of Oakville, Milton, Halton Hills, Mississauga and South Etobicoke and is the province’s second smallest LHIN in geographical size and the fifth largest in population. It had the highest growth rate in population (12%) from 2006 to 2011 and includes the fastest growing community in Canada – the town of Milton. 

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Read more about Breathe Better – Live Better at: 

Media Contacts

For more information or to arrange interviews with representatives from your local hospital, Mississauga Halton LHIN, GSK and Mississauga Halton CCAC, please call or email the media contacts below:

Zita Raponi

Communications Specialist

Halton Healthcare Services

T: 905-845-2571 ext. 6774

Catherine Pringle

Senior Advisor, Communications & Public Affairs

Trillium Health Partners
T: 905-848-7580 ext. 3832; Cell: 416-358-7201 

Nancy Gale

Director, Strategic Communications and Stakeholder Management

Mississauga Halton Community Care Access Centre

T: 905-855-9090 ext. 7899 

Maureen Buchanan

Lead, Communications

Mississauga Halton Local Health Integration Network

T: 905-337-8060; Cell: 416-818-3087 

Janet Grdovich

Associate Communications


T: 905-819-7095

Sarey Caplan 

Associate Communications


T: 905-819-7205


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