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Asthma Quality Network Newsletter

December 2009

Table of Contents

Program Update

Barbara Chilmonczyk Receives the American Lung Association in Maine
2009 Roselle Huddilston Award
Dr. Chilmonczyk, clinical advisor for the MaineHealth AH! Asthma Health Program, received the award at the Lung Association annual meeting on October 9th. The award recognizes Dr. Chilmonczyk's volunteer efforts and her dedication to developing the curriculum for the Maine Asthma Educators Institute, a model adopted for the national curriculum.

Angela Mowatt in New Role with the AH! Program
On October 1, Angela Mowatt's position changed from part-time Administrative Associate to full-time Program Coordinator for the asthma and COPD programs.  Angela's increased role will enable these programs to more fully support MaineHealth member and affiliate hospitals and providers in the MaineHealth service area to serve the needs of patients with asthma and COPD.

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Asthma News

Intensive Tobacco Treatment Training and Conference
Mark the date for Tobacco Treatment with Diverse Populations on April 27 and 28 in Bar Harbor.  This advanced training is designed for healthcare and education professionals who deliver or want to deliver intensive tobacco treatment services.  For more information, contact Center for Tobacco Independence, 662-5224 or

Maine Asthma Council Quarterly Meeting Dates Set for 2010
The Maine Asthma Council - a multi-disciplinary statewide group will hold quarterly meetings at the Maine Center for Public Health in Augusta on:

  • March 11th, 9:00am-12:00pm
  • June 10th, 1:00pm-4:00pm
  • September 9th, 9:00am-12:00pm
  • December 9th, 1:00pm-4:00pm

Please join us.  Click here for the Maine Asthma Council website.

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Clinical Update

The role of inhaled corticosteriods and montelukast in children with mild-moderate asthma: results of a systematic review with asthma: results of a systematic review with meta-analysis J. Castro-Rodriguez; G. Rodrigo  Archives of Diseases of Childhood, published online November 27, 2009

OBJECTIVE: To compare the efficacy of inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) vs. montelukast (MONT) in schoolchildren and adolescents with mild-moderate persistent asthma.
CONCLUSIONS: Schoolchildren and adolescents with mild-persistent asthma treated with ICS had less AEX and better lung function and asthma control than with MONT. There is insufficient data to determine if the addition of MONT to ICS improves outcome.
Click here for a copy of the full article.

 Prevalence of Lifetime Asthma and Current Asthma Attacks in U.S. Working Adults: An Analysis of the 1997-2004 National Health Interview Survey Data Syamlal G, Mazurek JM, Bang KM  Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: September 2009 - Volume 51 - Issue 9 - pp 1066-1074
OBJECTIVE: To estimate national prevalence of lifetime asthma and asthma attacks among workers by age, sex, race, occupation and industry, and estimate population attributable fraction to employment for asthma attacks in the United States. Survey data for currently working adults aged >/=18 years were analyzed.
RESULTS: Lifetime asthma prevalence was 9.2%; the social services religious and membership organizations industry and the health service occupation had the highest asthma prevalence. Asthma attack prevalence among workers with asthma was 35.4%; the primary metal industry and the health assessment and treating occupation had the highest attack prevalence. Approximately, 5.9% of cases reporting an asthma attack were attributed to employment when considering industries and 3.8% when considering occupations.

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Asthma Tools and Resources

New Quick Guide for Spirometry
A new tool has been developed by the MaineHealth Adult Asthma and COPD workgroup to help providers in utilizing spirometry in the diagnosis of asthma and COPD.  The guide covers the basics of spirometry- what it is, why it is done, how often to use it, what equipment is needed, how to perform spirometry, interpretation of the results, and how to determine whether it is asthma or COPD. Click here for a copy.  It is also available on the MaineHealth COPD website or the website for JS McCarthy users who want multiple copies.

Posters to Promote Spirometry
Help your patients learn the importance of having spirometry.  Hang the poster, developed by the National Lung Health Education Program, in your waiting room, exam room or anywhere that patients can view it.  JS McCarthy users can order it on-line.  Or contact Angela Mowatt for a poster.  


 New Test for Respiratory and Asthma Control in Kids (TRACK) Under 5 Years Old
TRACK is a 5 question test for parents to help determine if their child's breathing problems are not under control.  This new test is for children 0 - 4 years old. The American Academy of Pediatrics Quality Improvement Network participated in the validation of this new tool distributed by AstraZeneca
Click here to read the article, "Test for Respiratory and Asthma Control in Kids (TRACK): A caregiver-completed questionnaire for preschool-aged children". 
Click here for a copy of TRACK.  

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