31 July 2020

Asthma Australia launches free accredited asthma training online

Asthma Australia have partnered with Reed Medical Education to create a series of free accredited asthma education training modules for General Practitioners (GPs), nurses, pharmacists and allied health professionals, via the ThinkGP online platform.

Asthma in Australia: Practical Solutions for challenges in primary care, Accredited Learning Module (ALM) is based on current Australian guidelines and not only covers best practice diagnostic and management principles but explores the impact asthma has on patients and the common challenges to providing optimal care in primary practice.

Asthma Australia CEO Michele Goldman said it aims to help GPs diagnose and treat their asthma patients with greater confidence, making the most of consultation time.

“Asthma is a complex disease that affects people differently,” Ms Goldman said.

“The key to achieving the best patient outcomes is to understand the patient context and to tailor the care accordingly.”

To enable this, the ALM has a dedicated module on ‘Partnering with your patients’ which includes patient case studies and downloadable resources along with information on ways to tailor treatments for various populations and situations.

“We are at the forefront in asthma management and support, and with Reed Medical Education, have created this ALM so GPs, nurses, and other health professionals can better understand how to deliver best practice, person centred health care.

“Now is a good time for health professionals to ensure they are supporting their patients with the tools and information people need to achieve optimal protection as we head into winter.”

Winter is often a problematic time for people with asthma – adult hospitalisations peak during winter months – for various reasons including cold and flu season, hazard burns and wood fire heaters producing smoke pollution.

Nationally, Asthma Action Plan ownership is low at 32.3 percent, which is an indication that more training and support is needed for treating asthma.

“In 2017/18 asthma was one of the top five chronic conditions patients presented to general practitioners with[1] indicating that people with asthma need more in depth and personalised support to get on top of their asthma.

“It’s crucial GPs enable self-efficacy by equipping patients with the tools and information they need to handle an asthma flare up and keep on top of daily asthma management,” Ms Goldman said.

Ms Goldman added that up to 80 percent of all hospitalisations caused by asthma flare-ups are considered preventable.

“Asthma Australia aims to improve the lives of people with asthma and we believe the best way do this is through education and training.

“We want to help find a cure for asthma, but in the meantime, we hope these resources will help GPs and health professionals to better understand the needs of their patients, and to provide tailored support to manage their asthma in the best way possible,” Ms Goldman added.

More information on the ThinkGP training can be found via the Asthma Australia website and registration is free and can done at the ThinkGP website here.

To help people with asthma stay well, Asthma Australia has developed a series of free resources – the Asthma Toolkit – including an updated Asthma Action Plan, Asthma First Aid and patient guides. These can be downloaded from the Asthma Australia website.

[1] NPS MedicineWise, General Practice Insights Report July 2017–June 2018. Sydney: NPS MedicineWise, 2018