The HSE, Asthma Society of Ireland and COPD Support Ireland today commence a new joint Adviceline service for people with asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Asthma and COPD are two of the largest chronic diseases in Ireland with 850,000 people living with either asthma or COPD. While the Asthma Society has been operating an Asthma Adviceline for over 25 years, this new expanded service meets the needs of an increasing population with COPD.
The expanded Adviceline service is a collaboration between the Asthma Society of Ireland (ASI), COPD Support Ireland and the Health Service Executive. The COPD Adviceline is available at 1800 83 21 46 and the Asthma Adviceline is available at 1800 44 54 64. Callers can avail of the service by calling the free phone number between 09:00 and 17:00 Monday to Friday. A call back appointment with an experienced respiratory nurse specialist will be scheduled for a time and day that suits each individual caller.
Respiratory illness can be complex and the advice and support offered by a specialist nurse can inspire confidence in the message of self management and reassure callers or families of people living with these lifelong chronic conditions. The nurses working on the Adviceline have a great knowledge of asthma and COPD as well as significant clinical experience of caring for these patients, giving them an insight into the challenges faced by patients in terms of managing their asthma or COPD. They are uniquely placed to offer information and support to this group. As part of this new expanded service, nurses will be available for more hours each week to speak to callers. The new joint service will:
- Provide an easily accessible support and education service to people living with asthma and/ or COPD
- Empower people to engage effectively with their healthcare professionals and healthcare services
- Provide people with appropriate services, resources and materials
- Encourage people to look after their general health and wellbeing through encouraging smoking cessation, physical activity, and promoting vaccinations.
Patient education tools, resources and booklets will be made available to patients along with the adviceline support to ensure that patients are best informed and supported in managing their condition.
Pheena Kenny, Head of Health Promotion with the Asthma Society of Ireland said: “Having recently received accreditation for our Asthma Adviceline we are delighted to be expanding the service to meet the needs of even more people with chronic respiratory conditions. While asthma and COPD are lifelong conditions, they can be managed and the Adviceline nurses play a key role in empowering people to understand how to manage their condition through the provision of 1-1 tailored information and support. Our nurses are expert in the areas of asthma and COPD and they can make follow-up calls to people as necessary. We encourage people with asthma and or COPD to make use of this free and valuable service’.
Damien Peelo, Executive Director, COPD Support Ireland, believes that implementing this Adviceline service will be crucial to improving the lives of people living with COPD:
“At COPD Support Ireland our focus is on maintaining people’s health for longer, through early diagnosis, by keeping people out of acute hospitals through our support and self-management programmes. It has been clear to us for some time that people living with COPD need access to expertise at the end of a phone, as COPD can be a frightening diagnoses to get and learning to live with a live long chronic illness requires ongoing support and advice. We are delighted to collaborate with the Asthma Society of Ireland on the development of this service, as they have a proven track record in running an adviceline to the highest standard. As a relatively new organisation, this is incredibly exciting to offer people living with COPD such a vital service.”
Commenting on the launch of the joint service - Brian Murphy, Head of Planning, Performance and Programme Management in the Primary Care Division of the HSE said:
“The HSE is delighted to support this initiative which will offer tailored support and advice to people living with asthma and COPD. The HSE has worked closely with the Asthma Society of Ireland and COPD Support Ireland to develop this collaborative service which works in tandem with other health services which patients access. I believe the new service is a great example of the added benefit that the charity and voluntary sector can bring by working in partnership with each other and the broader health service. We will continue to work closely with patients, the Asthma Society of Ireland and COPD Support Ireland to make sure that the service is most effective.”
Last updated on: 01 / 07 / 2016