Public Health England has launched a new respiratory symptoms awareness campaign, called ‘Be clear on Cancer’, which will run on radio, TV, press, digital and social media until 31 August.
The campaign is encouraging people who have had a cough for three weeks or more, or symptoms of breathlessness, to visit their GP as it could be a sign of lung disease, including cancer.
The initiative is a rerun of last year’s campaign which successfully raised awareness of respiratory symptoms.
PCRS-UK welcomes the campaign because it supports our drive to reinforce the importance of diagnosing respiratory disease early and accurately.
PCRS-UK Chair Noel Baxter says: ‘Evidence suggests breathless people don’t always tell us about it and when they do it is often too late. This is a great opportunity in primary care to add value and use this increased awareness to ensure that when we see people with chronic cough and breathlessness that we ask the right questions, perform a focused examination and ensure our testing is comprehensive. A structured step by step process designed for general practice can make best use of the limited time we have with patients. For breathlessness, the Impress algorithm provides expert consensus on what to do. Locally we have developed our own guidance based on Impress and have subsequently also developed a cough assessment algorithm. Is this something that would be worth doing locally?’
You can update your diagnostic skills by:
Downloading the latest issue of Primary Care Respiratory Update HERE. This has a number of articles on the theme of diagnosis including:
- Early and accurate diagnosis: a patient safety issue
- Three case studies on diagnosing asthma
- Use of peak flow and microspirometry to aid diagnosis
- A pull out wall chart on equipment to support diagnosis
Booking a place at the PCRS-UK national conference which has a session on diagnosing the breathless patient and a debate on the role of FeNo testing in diagnosing asthma. Further information about the conference ‘Beyond the respiratory consultation: inspiring lifelong change’ is available HERE