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PHCC Publishes Preliminary Results of Evaluation of Students with Asthma

02 Apr 2023


The Primary Health Care Corporation’s (PHCC) School Health Department has completed the first evaluation of 1,054 students with asthma in 140 public schools as part of the implementation of the Asthma-Friendly Schools Program, in cooperation with the Non-communicable Diseases Department at the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH).

The application of the Asthma-Friendly Schools Program targets all public-school students, from Grade 1 through to Grade 12 on yearly basis, to improve the quality of life and health outcomes for children with asthma in schools, identify and document such cases in schools, and reduce exposure to stimuli (triggers) in the school environment. In addition to raising awareness among school staff, parents, and students on asthma, and encouraging students with asthma to participate in school activities, particularly physical activities.

The program also aims to provide quick access to medication (asthma inhalers) available in the school’s nursing room for students with asthma during school hours, and to professionally manage asthma attacks following clinical policies and protocols.

The school nurses’ role in the program starts from counting the students with asthma to communicating with parents to provide them with a treatment plan and obtaining their approval to give medicine at school. Then, using the peak flow meter device to measure air flowing out of the lungs to later document the readings in the student’s e-health file system, as well as providing awareness and health education.

The results showed that, of the 1,054 students with asthma, 644 were in primary schools, 227 were in middle schools, and 183 were in secondary schools. The percentage of Qatari students represented the largest among students with asthma with 70% (723 students) of the total.

Preliminary results also showed that the parents of nearly 700 male and female students did not provide the school health nursing with the treatment plan despite the frequent communication and request of the school health nursing for that, while the parents of 363 students provided the health nursing with the treatment plan updated by the attending physician.

Further, the results showed that 998 of the students with asthma participate in the school’s sports activities partially or completely, while 41 of them do not participate in sports activities and 15 others are part of the school’s sports team.

It is worth noting that all students with asthma have attended educational and awareness sessions on asthma regarding the correct ways of using their medications and how to measure air flowing out of the lungs.

To ensure achieving the Asthma-Friendly Schools Program’s objectives, in cooperation between MoPH and PHCC, a training workshop was organized for all school health nurses on the implementation of this program and the role of school nursing in it.

It should be noted that, for the first time, the e-health file system was implemented and used for students in schools, thus playing a prominent role on the implementation of this program and the provision of nursing services in public schools in general.

Through this program, all school health nurses were able to document the results of the first evaluation on the student’s e-health file system, which allows school health staff in all medical institutions (PHCC, Hamad Medical Corporation, and Sidra Medicine) to follow up on the student’s health status and the attending physician’s.