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Asthma Health Outcomes Project

Overviews of Surveyed Asthma ProgramsSeptember 2005

International Programs: United Kingdom (cont’d)Back to Index

Structured Discharge Procedure for Children Admitted to Hospital with Acute Asthma: A Randomised Controlled Trial of Nursing Practice

University of Leicester

LE2 7LX United Kingdom

Michael Silverman, MD, FRCPCH

44 1162 523262  

ms70@le.ac.uk

The "Structured Discharge Procedure for Children Admitted to Hospital with Acute Asthma: A Randomised Controlled Trial of Nursing Practice" was a study implemented in 1996 at a children's hospital in Leicester, United Kingdom. The study aimed to examine the impact of a structured, nurse-led discharge package for children (2-16 years) admitted to the hospital with acute asthma on readmission to the hospital, emergency room use, and general practitioner office visits for asthma (excluded repeat prescriptions and planned check ups).

The intervention, delivered by a nurse, consisted of an interview during which information was provided about the nature of asthma, the recognition of risk factors and how to avoid them, and on drugs and devices. The educational component emphasized guided self management and an individual written home management plan was devised for each child. In addition, a short booklet for parents and children was provided to reinforce verbal information, as well as provide information about asthma resources (i.e., National Asthma Campaign Helpline and a local asthma support group). The intervention took no longer than 20 minutes.

The evaluation showed a positive impact on hospitalization rates, emergency department visits, unscheduled office visits, and symptoms.

The intervention is conducted within the short time-frame available for health professionals to implement and is routine in clinical practice in the United Kingdom.

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