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NACI In the Know: Use Inhaled Corticosteroids

Volume 5 | Spring 2011

NACI Breaking News

Spring Launch Anticipated for NACI Clinical Champions Program

Everyone counts in the effort to improve asthma care and control.

However, health care providers are on the front lines because of their direct contact with patients and patients’ families.

NACI Partners ConferenceSeptember, 2010 conference of NACI Strategic Partners and Demonstration Projects

That’s why the National Asthma Education and Prevention Program (NAEPP)’s National Asthma Control Initiative (NACI) recently issued a call-to-action to organizations already engaged in its two core programs—Demonstration Projects and Strategic Partners (including both funded and non-funded partners)—encouraging them to submit proposals for how to extend their program’s reach and improve upon the science-based approaches that they have been implementing. The NAEPP is coordinated by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

Awardees will form the basis of the new NACI Asthma Clinical Champions Program and will work to increase the adoption of proven approaches that will improve asthma outcomes.

In 2009, 23 Demonstration Projects and Strategic Partners received 2-year contracts—totaling $1.3 million—to develop and test strategies to increase awareness and use of recommendations from the Expert Panel Report 3–Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Management of Asthma (EPR-3) and its companion Guidelines Implementation Panel (GIP) Report

You may be wondering: why the slow uptake of these guidelines and the six priority messages of the GIP Report by a number of health care providers, since the guidelines are not new? 

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GIP in Focus

Burn Analogy Sparks Patients' Use of Inhaled Corticosteroids

Cross-section of normal airways and affected by asthma
Cross section of airways under normal conditions and affected by asthma.

“Many individuals with asthma who live in the inner city believe that their asthma is an event, not a chronic disease where their airways swell up and muscles around them tighten,” said Michael B. Foggs, M.D., an allergy and immunology specialist with Chicago’s Advocate Health Centers. “That’s why we need to explain the concept of inflammation to them in terms that they can understand.”

What Dr. Foggs has found over the course of his work with high-risk, inner-city asthma patients in Illinois’ largest health care facility, is that using a highly visual analogy works best with patients.

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Asthma Research into Action

Getting Children to Take Their Inhaled Corticosteroids: Different Year, Same Challenge

It has been nearly 11 years since the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded an important 5-year, 1,000-child Childhood Asthma Management Program (CAMP) study. The longest and largest study of the effectiveness and safety of inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) for children, CAMP revealed that ICS provided superior asthma control for 5- to 12-year-olds with only a temporary side effect—a small reduction in growth rate during the first year of treatment.

Despite these findings, the passage of time, and recognition by clinicians that ICS are safe and effective for the long-term treatment of children with mild to moderate persistent asthma, the use of ICS is still inconsistent.

Fernando Martinez, M.D.—pediatric pulmonologist, director of the Arizona Respiratory Center, and member of the Panel that developed the NHLBI’s National Asthma Education and Prevention Program (NAEPP), that established clinical guidelines for the diagnosis and management of asthma —explains why.

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Partner Profile

Communication from Someone You Trust is Key to Educating Physicians on Asthma Care

Poor communication frustrates clinicians and patients alike—and can lead to poor asthma outcomes. Whether you are a physician or a patient, learning about asthma from someone you trust makes all the difference.

PACE logo

That understanding is the basis of the Physician Asthma Care Education (PACE) program, developed by the University of Michigan Center for Managing Chronic Disease (CMCD), a NACI Strategic Partner.

“The focus of PACE is peer training—physicians training physicians,” said Gillian Mayman, CMCD’s Communications Coordinator. “This is very important because they trust one another.”

PACE has proven to be effective in improving asthma care and control by opening the channels of communication between physicians and patients, by building physicians' knowledge and skills in:

  • Employing the best current asthma therapies;
  • Communicating more effectively with patients, in the same amount of time; and
  • Supporting patients’ efforts to manage their asthma according to clinical guidance.

An update of the PACE program will soon be released. Sign up now to join a PACE webinar on Wednesday, April 27  (1:00-2:00 p.m. ET), and be among the first to learn how you and your colleagues can put PACE into action. PACE includes updated strategies and tools, coding and reimbursement tips, and insights into six priority Guidelines Implementation Panel (GIP) messages from the clinical guidelines that are essential for quality asthma care.

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Last Updated April 2011