For the first time in over 10 years, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has released updated guidance on asthma, with the goal to improve outcomes. Use of these guidelines will change the standard of care for the 25 million Americans who have the condition. The emphasis is on tailored treatment for specific age groups—from children to adults—based on disease severity.
The 2020 Focused Updates to the Asthma Management Guidelines: A Report from The National Asthma Education and Prevention Program Expert Panel Working Group includes 19 specific recommendations related to diagnosis, management, and treatment of asthma. The 6 key areas covered are:
- Treatment with inhaled corticosteroids
- Treatment with long-acting antimuscarinic agents
- Use of immunotherapy
- Mitigation of indoor allergens
- Testing with fractional exhaled nitric oxide
- Treatment with bronchial thermoplasty
In addition to being available on the website of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), the report was published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. Companion materials produced by NHLBI geared specifically to healthcare providers include a clinician’s guide an at-a-glance guide (with stepwise tables), fact sheets, FAQs, and a digital toolkit, all available at www.nhlbi.nih.gov/asthmaguidelines.
The guidelines and companion materials are the culmination of analysis, by a 19-member expert panel working group, of systematic literature reviews. The reviews were conducted by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality with input from the National Asthma Education Prevention Program (NAEPP) participant organizations, medical experts, and the public.
Orvos Communications, LLC served as Senior Editor for the report, under a subcontract with Westat, the prime contractor for the project. Support provided by the company included note-taking at expert panel meetings, editing of the draft report and accompanying guides, incorporation of panel edits to the report, and quality control of the final product.
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