Asthma sufferers given a back seat

It is estimated that 5.4m people in the UK are affected by asthma yet two thirds of GPs in the UK feel that their knowledge on the condition is not up to scratch

Although some suffers only suffer from the condition mildly, figures still show that, in the UK, a person suffering an asthma attack is admitted to hospital every 7 minutes.

The study, carried out by Asthma UK, found that over half of the GPs questioned felt that their own knowledge of asthma needed to improve.

Current statistics show that 1,200 people die each year due to an asthma attack. However, GPs have stated that if their knowledge on the condition did improve then the number of asthma related deaths could decrease.

The National Quality Board recently revealed that asthma is a neglected topic and that there is great scope and a potential to improve the quality of healthcare for asthma sufferers.

Neil Churchill, chief executive of Asthma UK, said, ‘The new extended role of GPs in making decisions about the local NHS means that it’s becoming more important than ever that they fully understand asthma. It’s therefore very concerning that such a high proportion of GPs are saying they need more asthma education when education and training budgets are under threat.’

However, BMA Wales maintained that the quality of GP’s asthma care had risen significantly over the past 10 years.


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