Background/ Why Is This Important?
Pediatric asthma is the most common chronic disease affecting children, and it’s a leading cause of missed school days and hospital visits. As there is no known cure for asthma, the focus is on helping children and families control their asthma and improve their overall quality of life, as well as supporting healthcare providers with a coordinated approach and resources developed at a provincial level. The asthma guidelines in BC have traditionally focused primarily on the adult population.
What Actions have Already Been Taken?
Primary Care Guideline
Child Health BC (CHBC) and the Guidelines and Protocols Advisory Committee (GPAC) collaborated on the development of a provincial pediatric asthma guideline. The guideline identifies the care requirements for the pediatric population, including specific guidance for the diagnosis and management of children aged 1-5 years.
CHBC coordinated an evidence review of national and international guidelines and an extensive literature review. A 16-member working group, chaired by BC Children’s Hospital respirologist Dr. Connie Yang and representing multiple regions and disciplines, reviewed evidence, provided feedback and actively participated in the development of the guideline.
Through the GPAC process, an external review of the guideline was completed by asthma providers across the province including physicians, asthma educators and specialists. This extensive external review not only evaluated the guideline but also identified barriers to implementation. This information was used to develop support tools to facilitate practice change.
Emergency/Urgent Care Guideline
Child Health BC Provincial Asthma Guideline: Initial Management of Pediatric Asthma in Emergent/Urgent Care Settings
This guideline was developed by a multidisciplinary provincial working group with representation from the Regional Health Authorities and BC Children’s Hospital.
• It outlines recommendations for the initial management of pediatric patients presenting to emergent/urgent care settings with acute asthma exacerbations.
• Recommended actions based on the use of the Pediatric Respiratory Assessment Measure (PRAM);
• The Translating Emergency Knowledge for Kids (TREKK) Bottom Line Recommendations: Asthma were used as the foundation for building this guideline.
Practitioner tools were developed and are located in the Clinical Support Tool bar at the top of this page.
Where Are We Now?
The resources – and the data gathering and planning that led to them – will support provincial services planning and an evidence-based standardized approach to the diagnosis and management of children with asthma. This promises to facilitate earlier and improved care for children and families, leading to better health outcomes.
The primary care guideline is currently being evaluated to determine its impact in supporting primary care providers in the diagnosis and management of asthma among children aged 1-5 years.
Resources and Promotional Materials
- Asthma Poster: Promoting the asthma video for families and caregivers
Asthma Rack Card - Asthma Care Across Settings: Provides links to all of the provincial asthma resources for providers and families
- BC Guidelines: Asthma Diagnosis, Treatment and Management
UBC CPD Pediatric Asthma Management Course whose target audience is all BC health care providers that care for children with asthma. The course incorporates the above noted BC Guidelines and is up to 1.0 Mainpro+ / MOC Section 3 credits.
Patient and Family/Caregiver Handout: Asthma -What You Should Know: A two page handout that provides an overview of asthma symptoms, medication use, action plans and when to seek help. It also includes answers to frequently asked questions.
- Webinar with Drs. Connie Yang and Tiffany Wong from BC Children’s Hospital. Case studies highlight the new guideline and demonstrate how the tools and resources can support asthma management in the community.
- Webinar with Drs. Connie Yang and Claire Seaton from BC Children's Hospital. It provides an update on new resources available for practitioners treating children with asthma in the outpatient and emergency room setting.
- New video below! Childhood Asthma: A Guide for Families and Caregivers: The BC Children’s Hospital Asthma Program, with support from Child Health BC and BC Lung have just released a new asthma education video focused on the needs of Families and Caregivers.