Feasibility of a nurse-run asthma education program for urban African-Americans: a pilot study.J Asthma. 2001 Feb; 38(1):23-32.JA
The objective of the study was to assess the feasibility of implementing and evaluating a culturally appropriate in-patient asthma education program specifically targeted for African-Americans. A consecutive sample of 28 African-American patients ages 18-50 who were hospitalized for asthma were randomized to an intervention group, which received three one-on-one sessions on chronic asthma management, or a control group, which received the usual care. Data on symptom frequency, self-management behaviors, quality of life, depression, and health care resource use were collected at baseline and at 3 and 6 months. Although the time required to recruit our sample took longer than anticipated, 28 subjects agreed to be in the study (70% acceptance rate) and complete the baseline interview. We observed no statistically significant differences from baseline or changing trends in frequency of asthma symptoms, self-management behaviors, and health care resource use between the intervention and control groups at 3 and 6 months. However patients in the intervention group demonstrated a greater average increase in asthma-related quality of life and a greater average decrease in depression than the control group. Feasibility issues included shortened length of stay, which necessitated conducting all three self-management sessions together; multiple interruptions during the sessions, and retention issues at 3- and 6-month follow-ups. The lessons learned from this pilot study are invaluable in that they will enable us to make changes in our existing protocol to ensure the success of a larger clinical trial.