Objective: To determine the extent to which providers, caregivers, and pediatric asthma patients discussed environmental trigger control during primary care visits, and any demographic characteristics associated with having these discussions. Methods: Children ages 8-16 with persistent asthma and their caregivers were recruited at five pediatric practices in non-urban areas of North Carolina. All of the medical visits were audio-tape recorded. We administered questionnaires to the child's caregiver following the visit. Results: Two hundred and ninety-six patients had useable audio-tape data. Providers typically discussed at least one type of asthma trigger during these visits (86% of visits). The most common discussions were about exercise (70%), the weather/season (42%), and allergies/pollen (35%). Environmental control strategies were discussed less frequently (27% of visits). Providers educated the patient and their caregiver about environmental control strategies during 14% of the visits. Conclusion: Although providers frequently discuss some environmental triggers and provide education, there is room for more comprehensive discussions of these issues, which may contribute to decreased asthma exacerbations. Practice implications: Providers, or alternatively, asthma health educators, should devote more time to discussing environmental asthma triggers and control strategies with pediatric asthma patients and their families, as they are important components of overall asthma control.
- Environmental trigger control
- Patient-provider communication
ASJC Scopus subject areas