The development and implementation of a National Asthma Programme for Ireland is our number one advocacy priority and something we continue to strive for.
The HSE National Asthma Programme (NAP) was launched in 2010. Modelled on a pilot programme called The Asthma Demonstration Programme, which was developed, funded and implemented by the Asthma Society of Ireland in 2009, NAP aims to improve asthma care in Ireland.
The objectives of NAP are to:
- Ensure asthma treatment in primary and secondary care is provided according to a standard best practice guideline.
- Maximise the number of people whose asthma is controlled.
- Reduce asthma deaths by 90% over ten years.
- Ensure all patients diagnosed with asthma are enrolled over four years.
- Reduce GP out of hour visits due to asthma by 10% over 3 years.
- Reduce Emergency Department visits due to asthma by 10% over 3 years.
- Reduce the number of days spent in hospital by asthma sufferers by 10% per year over 3 years.
The aims of NAP may seem ambitious, but the results of international programmes and the Asthma Society’s Demonstration Programme, as well as a wealth of international research, suggests that the health benefits of structured, guideline-based asthma treatment in primary care are immense - both to asthma sufferers and to an overburdened hospital system.
A similar programme in Finland resulted in a 90% reduction in deaths and an 85% reduction in hospital admissions from asthma, as well as a 71% reduction in the financial burden of asthma on the Finnish State.
The Asthma Society of Ireland is the patient representative on the working group of the National Asthma Programme. We have strived over the last three years - developing and providing healthcare professional training modules, collaborating on implementation plans and providing patient education materials - to ensure that the National Asthma Programme was developed with the patient at the core.
We are now working on the next phase of the Programme, doing everything we can to ensure that it is implemented fully and that every person with asthma in Ireland can reap the benefits of structured, guideline-based asthma treatment.
If you would like more information about the National Asthma Programme or any other part of our Advocacy Programme. we would like to hear from you on 01 817 8886 or at firstname.lastname@example.org