Objective: This pilot study was undertaken to assess the need and acceptability of a theoretically based audit model to assist GPs improve their asthma care.
Method: Seventeen GPs from two GP divisions conducted a chart audit and patient survey of asthma patients presenting during the 8 week audit period. Audit results were discussed at a workshop providing a forum for GP peer groups to review their asthma care against current guidelines. This workshop allowed the GPs to develop strategies to improve their asthma care in the context of the resources of their individual practice, GP division, local community and health services.
Results: Of the 243 asthma patients audited 177 (72.8%) had a review of their asthma recorded in the past 12 months, 138 (56.8%) were prescribed regular preventive therapy and 118 (48.2%) had been given an asthma action plan. Despite the time commitment required to participate in the activity, 16 respondents who answered the audit evaluation questionnaire reported that the audit was a useful process and 15 (93.8%) stated that it had motivated them to change their practice.
Conclusion: The results confirmed the need for improved asthma care in general practice and demonstrated the feasibility of the GP-peer led, regionally coordinated, audit-workshop model.