Background and aim Inner-city paediatric asthma patients experience a significant increase of unscheduled and emergency department visits if they are not included in a continuous monitoring and educational program. Parental education represents a corner-stone of complex approach in these patients. The aim of our study was to document outcome of a structured parental involvement in management of asthmatic children.
Material and methods Prospective 6 month survey of patients with persistent asthma previously included in tele-monitoring study of our clinic. Were included children with uncontrolled asthma [ACT child score below 19] and frequent visits in Emergency Department in 2014. Both parents and children were educated in basic inhalation technique [video-training], received a written-action plan (WAP) and a link to “Virtual Asthma Hospital”. They were provided as a rescue-option an ED unscheduled visit. Non-responders to WAP were presented in ED.
Results In 2016 were 1078 ED visits of 326 patients with asthma. 34 children were included in study [10.43%] – 16 in monitoring group and 18 as controls. Patients had similar demographics [average age 6.6 years] and had male predominance [62.8% vs 65.1% in controls]. 2 in education vs 10 children in control group had one or more unscheduled visits to ED during study. Odds-ratio to have an unscheduled ED visit was 0.1143 in study group [p 0.0151, 95% CI 0.0199–0.6571]. All parents in intervention group were able to demonstrate an efficient inhalation technique. Inhaled steroids (ICS) compliance was significantly better in education group (87.5% vs 38.8%)
Conclusion Social media education can decrease the burden of unscheduled ED visits and increase ICS compliance for asthmatic children, in low-resource settings.
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