NICE COPD quality standard complements government strategy on respiratory disease
NICE's quality standard on chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) will be valuable in improving quality of care and will help the government achieve the aims of its strategy to improve outcomes for people with respiratory disease.
Published today, the quality standard features 13 statements that aim to define high quality care for people with COPD. This includes a statement that people with one or more indicative recorded symptoms of COPD should have the diagnosis confirmed by post-bronchodilator spirometry.
The quality standard complements the Department of Health's Outcomes Strategy, published earlier this month, which aims to “transform the care, quality of life and health outcomes” of those with respiratory disease.
Currently, it is estimated that COPD affects more than three million people in England and that 2 million people have the condition but are undiagnosed.
The condition develops from long-term damage to the lungs due to breathing in harmful substances, such as cigarette smoke.
COPD is the fifth biggest killer in the UK. And respiratory diseases, including conditions such asthma, currently contribute to more emergency hospital admissions than anything else.
The strategy states that the NHS Commissioning Board will draw on the NICE COPD quality standard, as well as the NICE clinical guideline, to drive improvements in the quality of NHS commissioning.
The COPD quality standard aims to provide a set of clear statements describing high quality care, with associated measures, within the scope it has adopted. In this case, the scope of the quality standard will focus on management and treatment of diagnosed COPD.
The standard recommends that those with COPD should have a current individualised comprehensive management plan that includes information and educational material about the condition and the management of it.
The standard also features a measure that encourages people with COPD to stop smoking and offers them the full range of evidence-based smoking cessation support.
Its content is based on the NICE existing clinical guideline and reflects acknowledged good clinical practice. However, not all those with COPD are receiving services that meet these standards, and the quality standard will be valuable in supporting improved quality of care for this group of people.
The quality standard will be reviewed later down the line, with a view to developing a revised standard with a broader focus that may include prevention and population-based interventions.
NICE will also develop a quality standard for asthma that will support the NHS in delivering the outcomes in the NHS Outcomes Framework. This will set some clear markers about high quality care, which can be used by commissioners and providers to ensure that a range of appropriate services is provided to people with asthma.
Christine Carson, Programme Director, Centre for Clinical Practice at NICE, said: “We are very pleased to be publishing this quality standard, adding to the bank of standards already available, which we hope will play an important role in improving patient care and outcomes.
“The NICE quality standard on COPD is an important addition to the recently published Outcomes Strategy for COPD and Asthma.”
29 July 2011