Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Role of Primary Health Care Nurses in Managing Adult Asthma

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Asthma, a chronic disease affecting millions globally, remains a significant public health concern. While it can be managed effectively by patients, the involvement of healthcare providers, particularly nurses in primary health care (PHC), is crucial. The Portuguese General Directorate of Health advocates for shared medical appointments to enhance asthma control. This study sought to elucidate the critical role that PHC nurses play in the management and treatment of asthma among adults.

Study Methodology and Findings

The research utilized the MeSH platform to validate descriptors such as asthma, nurses, and adults. It incorporated databases including CINAHL, MEDLINE, Web of Science, and Scopus. From an initial pool of 280 publications, 79 were duplicates, and 185 did not meet the inclusion criteria, leaving 16 relevant studies. These included 13 specialist reports, one mixed study, one quasi-experimental study, and one randomized trial.

The predominant intervention identified in the reviewed literature was patient education. Other notable interventions included patient assessments, the application of asthma control questionnaires, training in inhalation techniques, empowerment for self-management, support, promotion of seasonal influenza vaccination, and the use of written action plans. These measures collectively underscore the multifaceted role of PHC nurses in asthma management.

Implications for Nursing Practice

Despite the limited development of scientific evidence on these interventions, the existing data highlights the essential role nurses play in asthma control. The findings suggest that organized nursing appointments can significantly enhance the management of asthma in adults. By incorporating these evidence-based interventions, nurses can improve patient outcomes and contribute to better asthma control.

Key Takeaways for Practice

  • Patient education is crucial for effective asthma management.
  • Regular patient assessments and application of control questionnaires can improve monitoring.
  • Proper training in inhalation techniques can enhance medication efficacy.
  • Empowerment and support for self-management increase patient adherence to treatment plans.
  • Promotion of seasonal influenza vaccination can prevent complications.
  • Utilizing written action plans provides clear guidance for patients in managing asthma symptoms.

The study concludes that PHC nurses play an indispensable role in the control and treatment of asthma among adults. By implementing structured health appointments and integrating the identified interventions, nurses can significantly impact asthma management and patient quality of life.

Original Article: Adv Respir Med. 2024 Apr 25;92(3):175-189. doi: 10.3390/arm92030019.

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