Technology to Improve Asthma Adherence and Outcomes

A study assessed a speech recognition (SR) program to improve asthma medication adherence and outcomes. Peter J. Cvietusa, MD, FAAAAI, of Kaiser Permanente in Denver, Colorado, found that the SR reminder system was relatively easy to adopt and implement, low in cost, easy to maintain, and allowed a greater reach to the asthma population. The results were presented at the 2018 AAAAI Annual Meeting.

The SR program was implemented for the total Kaiser Permanente Denver patient population of 480,142, of which 36,356 had asthma. Eligible patients had a diagnosis of persistent asthma, filled ≥1 inhaled corticosteroid prescriptions in the prior six months, and remained continuously enrolled with Kaiser Permanente for a two-year period (between October 23, 2012, and October 23, 2014).

The researchers compared adherence and exacerbation events one year prior to the intervention and one post-intervention for 4510 adults ranging in age from 19 to 64 years. An exacerbation event was defined as a hospitalization, emergency department visit, or course of prednisone where asthma was the principal diagnosis.

Patient adherence, defined as portion of days covered, improved from 39.5% to 41.1% (P=.0001). There was no difference in asthma outcomes.

The SR program had a significant impact when evaluated using the dimensions of the RE-AIM framework. The initial cost of developing the SR system using internal resources was $11,000; however, the researchers noted that it would have cost $24,000 if an external vendor were used.

Source: Cvietusa PJ. Implementing health care research technology to improve asthma management. Abstract #L24. Presented at the 2018 AAAAI Annual Meeting, March 2-5, 2018, Orlando, FL.