By Nigel Praities
GP practices using registers of at-risk asthma patients are able to give their patients better care and reduce their likelihood of ending up in hospital, say UK researchers.
In a study involving 29 GP practices in Norfolk, primary care researchers compared practices with registers of asthma patients aged five or older at high risk of complications, with controls.
After a year, they found patients at practices that had at-risk registers were 52% less likely to be hospitalised for asthma and 53% more likely to attend GP appointments compared with control practices.
They were also 24% more likely to be prescribed oral steroids, 14% more likely to be prescribed inhaled steroids and 24% more likely to be prescribed inhaled beta-agonists.
However, the study – presented at the British Thoracic Society meeting in London earlier this month – showed no significant difference between groups in the overall rate of moderate-severe exacerbations.
The authors concluded: ‘Together these are suggestive of improved asthma management in the intervention group.'
BTS 2010, abstract S137At-risk registers were found to improve the management of asthma patients At-risk registers were found to improve the management of asthma patients CPD modules on asthma
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