Focus 2012

Posted on January 9, 2012

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Greetings to you and I hope the New Year is treating you well. I can’t believe I haven’t posted  since November. Sorry about that, but things have been quite hectic here these past few weeks and this seems as good a time as any to share our good news.

As you may remember, last fall HealthCare PSI launched its first patient advocacy program aimed at addressing the runaway problem of asthma and other breathing disorders in children. The project is called PEAK 4 Kids™ and we began introducing it to K-12 schools in late November.   To date, 17 public schools in Missouri are enrolled in the program – some 9,000 children ages 5 – 18. (And now you know why the posts suddenly stopped in mid-November!) We provide staff training for the  detection & screening of symptoms, continuing education, treatment referral and longterm support.

Our program focus is on rural and underserved communities in the US, and on cities with fewer than 300,000 residents.  These populations are largely overlooked by government-funded health programs. And, unlike grants, we are not coming to town to conduct research – our goal is to form knowledgeable teams of people in each community to effectively tackle their own local respiratory health issues.

The US spends $56 billion annually to treat asthma – yet half of all patients fail to get effective care from their physicians. Instead, far too many are inappropriately given antibiotics. This physician behavior is throwing gasoline on the Antibiotic Overuse Bonfire, which has been blazing out of control for so long now that it has become of major concern to the CDC.

PEAK 4 Kids™ is funded by corporate partners who share our commitment to good respiratory health. And I am happy to announce that last week, we formed a new alliance that allows us to expand our program to include respiratory health screening and  education for adults, too. The national COPD Foundation in Washington, D.C. is graciously supplying us with all the materials needed to educate parents, faculty and staff about COPD.

Unimpeded breathing is essential to every function in our daily lives. Diminished respiratory health also diminishes the quality of life itself and leads to nothing but limitations and unrealized potential.  We aim to change that.

Our goal for 2012 is to introduce PEAK 4 Kids™ to 100 schools throughout Missouri, and expand into Southern Illinois school districts. This is an aggresive, but doable goal. We welcome collaborations with other groups working in this field and with companies interested in supporting the work.

This year there may be fewer posts here – but check our Twitter feed for headlines concerning patient care. And I’ll probably post a rant or two when news warrents. Be assured – there is no loss of interest in patient advocacy. My work has shifted away from the keyboard and into the field.

As always, you are welcome to contact me with comments, questions and other inquiries. I look forward to hearing from you.

May 2012 Be Your Brightest Yet

DK

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Posted in: Project PEAK