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Asthma care: a review of changes in current practice

Author: Jane Scullion, Steve Holmes

Duration: 2 hours Last updated: 2021 Quality Assurance: Peer-reviewed Level: Qualified nurses, Students Language: English

Course description

This module examines the findings from the National Review of Asthma Deaths (NRAD) (Royal College of Physicians (RCP) 2014) in the light of routine practice in primary care and explores where nurses might make changes to the approaches used for routine asthma management and care.

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Learning aims and intended outcomes

  • Describe the triggers and exacerbations of asthma, how these are perceived by patients and how they are treated
  • Summarise the findings of NRAD with reference to routine primary care practice, and understand how changes to practice can address the challenges raised
  • Discuss the medications used in asthma treatment, and understand the guidelines and where to use them appropriately and effectively, while addressing patients' concerns about their medication
  • Review asthma treatment and management plans and communicate the reasons for any changes in care to the patient
  • Outline the ways in which you can consult with patients and other healthcare professionals to revise a plan of asthma care and support


  • Introduction
  • Background
  • Triggers and exacerbations
  • Use of services
  • Stepping up or down
  • Patient factors
  • Consultations
  • Conclusions


Jane Scullion
Respiratory nurse consultant, University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, Glenfield Hospital, Leicester.
Steve Holmes
General practitioner, Park Medical Partnership, Shepton Mallet, Somerset.


Please note that information provided by RCNi Learning is not sufficient to ensure competence in the skill. Assessment of competence should take place in line with local practice. Practice should always align with local protocols and procedures, latest guidelines and any regulatory code. All modules should currently be viewed together with available national and local Covid-19 guidelines. For advice, go to


  • Introduction
  • Background
  • Triggers and exacerbations
  • Use of services
  • Stepping up or down
  • Patient factors
  • Consultations
  • Conclusions

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