The COPD National Action Plan: Goal 2
Posted on March 29, 2016 |
Thank you for your comments on our Town Hall Goal #1 post! Your feedback is important to us and this community as we take our collective next steps.
This week we will focus on Goal #2 of the National COPD Action Plan: Increase and sustain prevention, detection, diagnosis, treatment, and management of COPD.
This is a broad and important goal, so please feel free to comment on all or parts of this objective. How can we all work to increase and sustain these efforts or implement new and innovative approaches?
In thinking through these goals, it may also help to expand upon a few terms.
- Prevention: Prevention is stopping the development of a disease or its comorbidities and can also include the prevention of additional symptoms. These might be educational efforts to reduce smoking and exposure to other lung irritants or prevention of disease through influenza or pneumococcal vaccines. What do you think we should be doing in the area of prevention?
- Detection: Detection and diagnosis are easily confused terms. Detection is the initial identification of issues or symptoms; in the case of COPD, it might be dyspnea or increased mucous production. The person experiencing these symptoms and his or her provider do not yet know what is causing these issues as the diagnostic process has not yet been initiated. What are your thoughts on improving detection?
- Diagnosis: Diagnosis is a more formal and systematic identification of an actual disease or disorder. In COPD, the diagnostic gold standard is spirometry. (See our expanded page on diagnosis here.) How can we improve the diagnosis of COPD and its comorbidities?
- Treatment: Next up is treatment. Treatment here refers to addressing the underlying cause of a disease and its symptoms. In the case of COPD, it could be a surgery, medication or non-pharmaceutical intervention, such as pulmonary rehabilitation. For patients, it could also be personalized education and tools that promote shared decision making. For providers, it could include the distribution of and education on evidence-based guidelines. This is a broad and important task. How can we improve treatment and issues associated with it, such as access to treatments?
- Management: Management of a disease and its comorbidities is a more global concept that includes not only treatment of the disease itself, but extends to the whole patient and his or her presentation – including addressing the psychosocial aspects of living with a chronic disease, activities of daily living and the empowerment of the patient to self-manage his or her disease. How can we improve or sustain our efforts in this area?
No matter if you are a patient or provider, family or community member, we look forward to your ideas on Goal #2 – how can we increase and sustain prevention, detection, diagnosis, treatment, and management of COPD?