Improvements called for in COPD management
A new report from the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) highlights a wide range of improvements needed in the management of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) care in primary care in England.
Data presented in this report demonstrates that accuracy of COPD diagnosis needs to improve to avoid high cost, unsafe, and clinically ineffective treatments being provided to people who do not, in fact, have COPD. In addition, the report suggests that some of the most clinically and cost-effective treatments for COPD, including treatment for tobacco dependency, targeted pharmacological treatment, and pulmonary rehabilitation, are being underutilised.
The report sets out the following key recommendations to support improvement in COPD care within a primary care setting:
- Accurate and early diagnosis should be prioritised
- People with a confirmed COPD diagnosis should be offered the treatment that will provide them with the best outcome in the most cost-effective way.
- A person-centred approach is vital in ensuring that those with more severe disease are identified for optimal therapies
- Better coding and recording of COPD diagnosis, treatment and referral is imperative.
Finally, the report outlines a wide variety of quality improvement resources to support primary care clinicians in England to deliver the standard of care to people with COPD.
Publication of the RCP report comes at the same time as launch of the updated Global Initiative for COPD (GOLD) strategy. This latest update is the GOLD strategy’s fourth major update and includes a refinement of the ABCD assessment tool, which separates the spirometric grades from the ABCD groups.
RCP report ‘Primary care: COPD in England – finding the measure of success’
GOLD 2017 Strategy update