A critical part of The Lung Association’s work is to support best practice treatment and ultimately improve the lung health of children and adults with asthma – like grade 8 student Gabriel Roosevelt-Jackman. His asthma triggers  include everyday things we typically don’t give a second thought to: chilly weather, cat hair and strong scents like perfume. Having grown up with nights in the emergency room, using inhalers and sometimes struggling to breathe, this teenager relies on health-care professionals to treat him with the best care when needed.

The Lung Association’s Emergency Department Asthma Care Pathway (EDACP) and its implementation tools have been designed to support best practice and to address key objectives of asthma management that can lead to improved asthma care delivery and patient outcomes in the emergency department (ED).

The EDACP provides a standardized approach to evidence-based asthma care for our emergency departments across Ontario. It is based on the Canadian Thoracic Society (CTS) asthma guidelines and other relevant clinical guidelines and literature. It is designed to promote:

  • Appropriate assessment of the severity of the exacerbation (worsening of condition)
  • Evidence-based asthma treatment
  • Patient education prior to discharge
  • Comprehensive discharge instructions
  • Arrangements for follow-up care

There are two streams of the EDACP. One is for adults 16 years and older with a history of asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) with asthma or a previous episode of wheezing requiring treatment. The other is for children one to 17 years with a history of asthma or previous episode of wheezing requiring treatment.

Because of our work, Gabriel can breathe easier knowing when his asthma becomes a threat, the emergency department team have access to high quality standards for his asthma care.

The Emergency Department Asthma Care Pathway program is made possible thanks to funding by the Government of Ontario.