5 May 2021
World Asthma Day
Today, 5th May 2021, has been designated World Asthma Day, by the Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA).
GINA’s theme for this year’s World Asthma Day is “Uncovering Asthma Misconceptions,” and aims to look at common widely held myths and misconceptions concerning asthma. GINA says that common misconceptions surrounding asthma include:
- – Asthma is a childhood disease; individuals will grow out of it as they age
- – Asthma is infectious
- – Asthma sufferers should not exercise
- – Asthma is only controllable with high dose steroids.
The truth is:
- – Asthma can occur at any age (in children, adolescents, adults and elderly)
- – Asthma is not infectious. However, viral respiratory infections (such as common cold and the flu) can cause asthma attacks. Or In children, asthma is frequently associated with allergy, but asthma which starts adulthood is less often allergic.
- – When asthma is well controlled, asthma subjects are able to exercise and even perform top sport.
- – Asthma is most often controllable with low dose inhaled steroids
The new Quality Outcomes Framework guidelines are supporting the use of Spirometry to diagnose asthma (https://www.pcrs-uk.org/resource/updated-respiratory-qof-indicators-included-gp-contract-2020).
If you are considering re-starting Spirometry following the pandemic restrictions, this document may be helpful. It has been produced by the British Thoracic Society, Primary Care Respiratory Society, Association of Respiratory Nurse Specialists, and the Association for Respiratory Technology and Physiology, for the NHS England and NHS Improvement Clinical Policy Unit. The document is available via the website of the Association of Respiratory Nurse Specialists.
It may be a good idea to seek local guidance before you re-start. However, if you have no local guidelines, then this document may help to start the ball rolling.
Association of Respiratory Nurse Specialists Conference
The ARNS annual conference on Friday, 9th July 2021 will once again be online. The standard of online conferences has been very high since the pandemic, and this annual event is always worthwhile. You don’t have to be a member of ARNS to attend, but if you are you receive a nice discount.
Primary Care Respiratory Society Conference
Last year, this excellent event was held online, and was remarkable not only for its content, but for the way it had been put together, using very simple and accessible technology. While you may think that an online conference is not as good as the real “face to face” thing, there was one advantage at last years’ conference. During some of the sessions, the ‘chat’ going on enabled me to talk to people I’d never met before (not always easy when you are in a full room of ‘real’ people), and develop new links.
The PCRS also have a series of free Clinical Webinars throughout May and June. These are being run by nurse Ren Lawler and GP Steve Homes, who are leading lights in respiratory care, and engaging educationalists to boot!
Hope to ‘see’ you virtually this year – or may be even for real at last!