2019 MACH MRFF

Rapid Applied Research Translation 

Successful Grants & Fellowships

Prof Harriet Hiscock

MACH Partners: Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Northern Health, Royal Children's Hospital, University of Melbourne

Project titleImproving the care of children with frequent asthma admissions through partnerships with hospitals, GPs and families

Summary: Asthma is the most common chronic childhood illness and accounts for most paediatric hospital admissions. To prevent frequent, costly admissions, we need to understand factors in a child’s care journey associated with re-admissions. This project will follow a group of children who were admitted to one of three hospitals for asthma treatment in 2017 comparing a group of children with at least 1 subsequent asthma re-admission in 2018 to the group of children who are not re-admitted during this time.

About Prof Hiscock's Research Project

What is the problem you're trying to solve? 

Asthma is the most common chronic childhood illness and accounts for most paediatric hospital admissions. Approximately 1 in 5 Australian children are re-admitted to hospital after their first admission. To prevent frequent, costly admissions, we need to understand factors in a child’s care journey associated with re-admissions.

About this research translation project

 

This project aims to identity modifiable: (1) , (2) , and (3) associated with asthma re-admissions.

 

We will follow a group of children who were admitted to one of three hospitals for asthma treatment in 2017. We will compare a group of children with at least 1 subsequent asthma re-admission in 2018 to the group of children who are not re-admitted during this time.

 

We know from previous studies that to keep children out of hospitals, partnerships between hospitals, GPs and families are important. We will therefore identify modifiable differences in the hospital management between these two groups of children, i.e. whether an asthma action plan was given, preventer medication was prescribed when indicated and follow-up was arranged. We will identify differences in treating GPs’ understanding of asthma and adherence to best practice guidelines. Families provide the day to day care for children with asthma and are ideally placed to drive and coordinate care. We will interview families to better understand their knowledge of asthma, how they manage an asthma attack, any problems with access to health services and medications, and what may stop them giving their child their preventer medications.

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What will be the impact? 

Findings will inform better asthma care through (i) dissemination to clinicians and families and (ii) future interventions. We will disseminate findings through the Victorian Paediatric Clinical Network (network of hospitals caring for children), GP electronic guidelines, and journal publication(s). Project partners will use findings to develop and test novel interventions.

RART 2.2 Expansion Activities 

Prof Hiscock received additional funding in our Rapid Applied Research Translation scheme Round 2 Stage 2 for an expansion on her Stage 1 project. Expansion activities include co-designing and testing across the Australian Hospital Research Network of an innovative model of care (app) to increase family and GP care for children with asthma in the community. Health services guidelines will also be revised and GP education programs developed based on findings from the study.

Download this project summary:

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