Empowering Patients: The Crucial Role of Education in Respiratory Disease Management

April 22, 2024

As a Respiratory Therapist who has worked in the field for seven years, a common theme among patients is the insufficient amount of education provided to the patient about their disease process and proper use of the medication prescribed. Due to a shortage and/or high caseload of physicians in Canada, many patients are not given the proper tools and resources to be confident in their disease process. 

For example, in recent reported data through Blue Charm, 49% of COPD patients did not receive any education on how to manage the possible side effects of their treatment.

 39% of patients that describe their asthma as “poorly controlled” say that they “rarely” or “never” discuss their asthma control with their health care provider. 


Patients who have not received the proper education often misuse their medication, have decreased compliance and/or unaware of the potential exacerbation triggers which results in hospital admissions. 

Given the state of our health care industry, patients now more than ever need to be their biggest advocate when it comes to their health. Individuals need to continue to educate themselves, whether that is through online platforms, their physicians, other healthcare personnel, and/or support groups. Being aware of your disease, its implications and knowing the valuable insights into how you can better control it can lead to an increased quality of life. Having the correct medications and knowing about your disease is important, however, knowing how to properly use those medications and what triggers to avoid is the key to success in managing your disease.

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