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Website to support nurses to improve inhaler standards

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An interactive new website has been launched today with the aim of raising awareness of the importance of accurate inhaler technique among nurses and other healthcare professionals.

The free site promotes guidance from the UK Inhaler Group (UKIG) on inhaler standards and competency, which was first published in January.

“Healthcare professionals need to know it, show it, teach it and review”

Jane Scullion

UKIG said it developed the standards following concerns that patients remained unable to use inhalers correctly and many clinicians were also unable to help them to optimise their technique.

The standards set out how healthcare professionals can work with patients to maximise the benefit of their inhaled medication, stated the group.

The charity Education for Health developed the site in partnership with UKIG, a coalition of not-for-profit organisations and professional societies with a common interest in promoting the correct use of inhaled therapies.

UKIG member Jane Scullion, respiratory nurse consultant at University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust and lead author of the standards document, said: “We are excited to launch this new site on World Asthma Day.

“It is an excellent resource that will help to spread the word about UKIG’s inhaler standards and, in turn, improve outcomes for many people with respiratory disease,” she said.

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Jane Scullion

She added: “Using an inhaler is the most common and effective way to take respiratory medications and remains the cornerstone for treating airways diseases such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

“Correct inhaler use is fundamental to improving outcomes in asthma and COPD,” she said. “Healthcare professionals need to know it, show it, teach it and review.”

Monica Fletcher, chair of UKIG and chief executive of Education for Health, said: “We great pride in delivering education and training in an innovative way that enables healthcare professionals to increase their knowledge and understanding at a time and place to suit them.

“This new interactive site is a great example of this and will enable many professionals to support patients to optimise their inhaler technique,” she added.

Education for Health has also launched a short film, Jack Blows His Own Trumpet, today that is designed to help encourage children with asthma to use their inhalers effectively.

It features a poem that tells the story of a little boy, Jack, who longs to play the trumpet in a band but is unable to because of his asthma.

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