Date of Award


Degree Name

Nursing (D.N.P.)


College of Nursing

First Advisor

Andrea C. Bostrom

Second Advisor

Geraldine Terry

Third Advisor

Kimberly K. Fenbert


Asthma is a life-long chronic lung disease that inflames and narrows a person’s airway. Asthma results in recurring periods of chest tightness, wheezing with inspiration and/or expiration, shortness of breath, nighttime or early morning coughing, and trouble sleeping as a result of coughing and wheezing. An asthma exacerbation occurs when asthma symptoms worsen enough to require medical intervention or self-administration of oral corticosteroids. Exacerbations can be graded in severity as mild, moderate, severe, and life threatening. An asthma action plan (AAP) is a written treatment plan developed collaboratively between the health care professional and the patient for self-management and maintenance of asthma symptoms. Despite the benefits of the AAPs, they are underused by primary care providers and are infrequently updated despite the variable nature of the disease. The Asthma Control Test (ACT) is a valid and reliable patient-based 5-item assessment tool to assess patient asthma control. The ACT is based on asthma management guidelines including asthma symptoms, use of rescue medications, and the impact that asthma has on daily functioning. The Childhood Asthma Control Test (C-ACT) is a 7-item patient-based assessment tool used to determine asthma control in children. This project aimed to increase the providers’ use of these tools at a Midwestern state-supported University’s nurse-managed academic Family Health Center (FHC). The project included (a) incorporating the ACT and the AAP into the FHC’s electronic health record. (b) an in-service for all providers by an asthma expert to review the disease and the importance of patient self-monitoring with these tools, and (c) a record review comparing the use of these tools before and after the initiation of this project. The results of this project demonstrated the acceptability of these tools by the providers and an increased use in the electronic health record.

Included in

Nursing Commons