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How to Implement Change in Asthma Management in a Developing Country

DOI: 10.4236/ojrd.2019.91003, PP. 26-35

Keywords: Bronchial Asthma, Health Service, Developing Country, Kotter’s Model, Leadership

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Abstract:

The goal of asthma management is to control symptoms, reduce the need for short acting beta agonist, and maintain optimal pulmonary function, and normal physical activities. Uncontrolled asthma can lead to obesity, suboptimal pulmonary function, poor quality of life and mortality. Children with bronchial asthma in River State University Teaching Hospital were just receiving acute care in the emergency room with no concrete plan for a follow up care for their chronic asthma; as a result most of the patients had uncontrolled asthma. In the hospital, the situation led to increased emergency hospitalization, resulting in decreased bed availability, increased burden on manpower and health resource utilization thereby putting more pressure on the limited health resources. Using the Kotter’s model for change management, transformational and situational leadership style, the change in the desired quality and scope of health service rendered to asthmatic patients was successfully implemented; as a result there was a decrease in emergency room visit for acute asthma by 57.5% and an increase in the uptake of scheduled clinic visits for asthma control services. The effect of these changes was an improvement in the control of asthma and quality of life of our patient cohort. Implementation of change in health service delivery is a delicate process that needs a stepwise approach in order to successfully implement and sustain the desired change.

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