Caregivers’ Perception of Asthma Control in Children
Latonda S. Paymon, Patsy Riley, and Barbara Miller
In the United States, more than 7 million children are affected by asthma. Asthma causes inflammation and narrowing of the airways, triggering coughing, wheezing, and tightness of the chest. Frequently, caregivers are not equipped with adequate knowledge and tools that allow appropriate management of asthma for pediatric patients. Studies show that care is improved when caregivers are adequately educated on asthma control, management, treatment, triggers, lung function, and the need for follow-up appointments. When implementing programs that use asthma action plans (AAPs) and peak flow meters, caregivers tend to report positive outcomes regarding asthma control in the child. A caregiver who reports control of the child’s asthma tends to have a positive perception of disease management. Data were obtained from a random sample of caregivers of children receiving care from a Federally Qualified Health Center. Thirty caregivers of children between the ages of 5 and 11 years diagnosed with asthma for at least one year were chosen to participate in the project. An individualized AAP and a peak flow meter were initiated with each caregiver, along with education regarding medications and spacers. Caregivers reported improved perception of control of patients’ asthma management. Healthcare providers’ adherence to evidence-based guidelines that address asthma management provide positive outcomesfor caregivers and children with asthma.