Magazine article Drug Topics

APhA Testing Pediatric Asthma Care Program

Magazine article Drug Topics

APhA Testing Pediatric Asthma Care Program

Article excerpt

A selected group of pharmacists will have a chance to impact the quality of asthma care for pediatric patients through a new pilot program developed by the American Pharmaceutical Association Foundation.

Funded by a grant from Glaxo Wellcome Inc., the Asthma Quality Improvement Pilot will be structured on a collaborative practice model to be set up in four ambulatory care sites in the Northeast. Patients, physicians, and pharmacists will work together to improve asthma therapy in the pediatric population. The four pharmacy sites have not been announced.

"According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, asthma is now the most common chronic childhood disease in the United States as well as the leading cause of school absenteeism," said Benjamin Bluml, APhA Foundation senior director of research. "Pediatric asthma is a health and qualityof-life issue affecting our children that is too large to ignore."

Plans for the asthma project include collection of data on emergency room visits, hospital stays, days lost from school and work, patient quality of life, and medication use. Based on the National Heart Lung & Blood Institute's National Asthma Education and Prevention Program, pharmacists could take an active role on the asthma care team in several ways. They could educate patients about asthma medications, instruct patients about the proper technique for inhaling medications, and monitor medication use and refill intervals to help identify patients with poorly controlled asthma. …

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