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J Am Pharm Assoc (Wash). 2002 Sep-Oct;42(5):743-52.

Improving pediatric asthma outcomes in the community setting: does pharmaceutical care make a difference?

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  • 1Department of Pharmacy, University of Washington, Seattle 98105, USA.



To assess the effect of a structured program of pharmaceutical care on changes in disease control, functional status, and health services utilization for pediatric and adolescent patients with moderate-to-severe asthma.


Randomized, controlled trial.


Community and clinic pharmacies (14 intervention and 18 usual care pharmacies) in western Washington State.


Three hundred thirty children, aged 6 to 17 years, with asthma.


Structured training for the intervention group pharmacists to provide individualized asthma management services during patient-pharmacist encounters for up to 1 year following the patient's enrollment into the study.


The primary outcome measure was change in pulmonary function as measured by peak expiratory flow rate and spirometry. Secondary outcome measures included changes in functional status and use of asthma-related health care services.


The intervention had no significant effect on the health or health services use outcomes of study subjects. When compared with the usual care group, there was no evidence that patients from the intervention group experienced improvements in pulmonary function, functional status, quality of life, asthma management, or satisfaction with care. In addition, there were no differences between groups in use of anti-inflammatory medications, total or asthma-related medical care utilization, or total or asthma-related school days lost.


This pharmaceutical care intervention had no significant effect on the health or health services use outcomes of pediatric patients with asthma. The intervention may not have been powerful enough to significantly affect pharmacists' behaviors and asthma patients' outcomes in community pharmacy settings, and there is evidence that the pharmacists' compliance with the study protocol was low due, in part, to patient- and practice-related obstacles.

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