Comprehensive asthma care keeps kids out of the hospital

May 01, 2010

A comprehensive, patient-centered approach to asthma care that includes education, referrals to specialists and home visits not only improves patients' health but also has tremendous potential to decrease health care costs, according to research to be presented Saturday, May 1 at the Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) annual meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Asthma is the leading cause of admissions at Children's Hospital Boston, particularly among from low socio-economic backgrounds. To improve asthma care in this high-risk group, researchers developed an "asthma medical home" within their primary care clinic. They identified 1,900 asthmatic patients and initiated education sessions that included a review of asthma basics, appropriate medication use, how to recognize and manage an , and common environmental asthma triggers.

Families also received assistance obtaining medications; referrals to allergy and pulmonary specialists; and support in reducing environmental triggers, which included access to dust mite covers and home visits for assessments and remediation of identified triggers (e.g., pests, mold).

Emergency department (ED) visits and inpatient hospitalization rates in the year before the program was in place were compared with those two years after program initiation.

Results showed that ED visits for asthma-related reasons decreased 63 percent (from 26 percent in 2006 to 9.9 percent in 2009), while inpatient hospitalization rates decreased 62 percent (from 10.5 to 4 percent).

"With increased access to their primary care providers, increased knowledge about their child's disease process and greater control over environmental triggers, families are better empowered to manage their children's asthma symptoms," said Faye F. Holder-Niles, MD, MPH, lead author of the study. "This comprehensive approach to can have tremendous impact on the lives of asthmatic patients."

Explore further: Study IDs risk factors for severe hidradenitis suppurativa

Provided by American Academy of Pediatrics

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Survey shows asthma not controlled in majority of patients

May 30, 2007

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – A survey of 1,812 patients with moderate-to-severe asthma revealed that the disease was not controlled in 55 percent, despite the fact that most had health insurance and visited their health care providers ...

Children's asthma affected by parental expectations

Oct 06, 2008

Asthmatic children whose parents have high expectations for their ability to function normally are less likely to have symptoms than other children dealing with the condition, according to a new study. Children also are more ...

Recommended for you

Ebola death toll rises to 1,427: WHO

10 hours ago

The death toll from the Ebola outbreak sweeping through west African countries has risen to 1,427 out of more than 2,600 cases, the World Health Organization said Friday.

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

ChristineWithRegence
not rated yet May 02, 2010
This shows that when we take control of our health care decisions, we can help control costs. Check out Whatstherealcost.org for more ideas!