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Smart inhalers for improved COPD management in the Sensing City

Year:
2014
Duration:
10 months
Approved budget:
$349,940.00
Researchers:
Dr Michael Epton
Health issue:
Respiratory disease/asthma
Proposal type:
Joint Research Partnership Project
Lay summary
For people with COPD, exacerbations, or “flare-ups”, are common and worsen quality of life. Patients often delay seeking help and are more likely to be admitted to hospital if they call an ambulance instead of contacting their GP. Our aim is to develop a prediction tool for exacerbations, monitoring inhaler use with a Smartinhaler™; and use this to link patients during exacerbations with local healthcare workers who know them best. We will also identify whether there are any clusters of exacerbations caused by air pollution. We will study patients admitted with COPD flare-ups, over 10 months, providing them with a Smartinhaler™. Half the group will then be randomly allocated to a personalised tele-health-prompted response to flare-ups, for comparison to the usual way patients manage an exacerbation. We will measure the costs associated with each approach, and whether patients experience less severe flare-ups and feel better using the tele-health approach.