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Canadian Respiratory Journal
Volume 20, Issue 4, Pages 301-306
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/906710
Original Article

Development and pilot testing of a mobile health solution for asthma self-management: Asthma action plan smartphone application pilot study

Christopher J Licskai,1 Todd W Sands,2 and Madonna Ferrone3

1Western University, London, Canada
2University of Windsor, Windsor, Ontario, Canada
3Hotel-Dieu Grace Hospital, Windsor, Ontario, Canada

Copyright © 2013 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Collaborative self-management is a core recommendation of national asthma guidelines; the written action plan is the knowledge tool that supports this objective. Mobile health technologies have the potential to enhance the effectiveness of the action plan as a knowledge translation tool.

OBJECTIVE: To design, develop and pilot a mobile health system to support asthma self-management.

METHODS: The present study was a prospective, single-centre, nonrandomized, pilot preintervention-postintervention analysis. System design and development were guided by an expert steering committee. The network included an agnostic web browser-based asthma action plan smart-phone application (SPA). Subjects securely transmitted symptoms and peak flow data daily, and received automated control assessment, treatment advice and environmental alerts.

RESULTS: Twenty-two adult subjects (mean age 47 years, 82% women) completed the study. Biophysical data were received on 84% of subject days (subject day = 1 subject × 1 day). Subjects viewed their action plan current zone of control on 54% and current air quality on 61% of subject days, 86% followed self-management advice and 50% acted to reduce exposure risks. A large majority affirmed ease of use, clarity and timeliness, and 95% desired SPA use after the study. At baseline, 91% had at least one symptom criterion for uncontrolled asthma and 64% had ≥2, compared with 45% (P=0.006) and 27% (P=0.022) at study close. Mean Asthma Quality of Life Questionnaire score improved from 4.3 to 4.8 (P=0.047).

CONCLUSIONS: A dynamic, real-time, interactive, mobile health system with an integrated asthma action plan SPA can support knowledge translation at the patient and provider levels.