In asthma and COPD, prescribing inhaler medicines appropriately and using them correctly is not straightforward. There are multiple inhaler medicines and many different inhaler devices; various clinical pathways that exist locally, nationally, and internationally; and long-standing issues for both patients and professionals alike in understanding and demonstrating correct inhaler technique. Clinicians and patients wish to ensure that appropriate and responsible prescribing decisions are made in the first place, and that the best possible gain is realised through adherence with therapy and good inhaler technique. RightBreathe is a tool designed specifically to help with the selection, prescribing, and on-going use of inhalers. Its overall aim is to optimise medicines use in this increasingly complicated area.
RightBreathe covers each and every inhaler and spacer device licensed in the UK for treating asthma and COPD. It presents specific, tailored information on each option in a standardised format and with assured quality. RightBreathe enables clinicians and patients to search and filter the options to suit individual circumstances and patients’ needs. It also maps all of the available options against local (London), national, and international prescribing pathways, hence reducing the complexity of decision making for the clinician. RightBreathe presents its content through this website, as well through an application (available for iOS and Android); the RightBreathe app includes features developed specifically to support patients with their ongoing adherence with inhaled therapy.
Delivering RightBreathe has involved genuine, productive collaboration between health-care professionals and digital development experts. The project has brought pharmacist, GP, technical, and design expertise to bear on a real-life clinical problem and could not have been accomplished successfully without this complementary mix of skills and ideas. The lead pharmacists were Ben Rehman (Director, London Medicines Information Service) and Darush Attar-Zadeh (Respiratory Lead Pharmacist, Barnet CCG); the lead GP, Dr Azhar Saleem (GP Respiratory Lead, Lambeth Clinical Commissioning Group); the lead technical expert, Mark Thomsit; and the lead designer, Simon Heys (both of Make + Ship).
RightBreathe’s content is now being actively maintained by Ben Rehman and Darush Attar-Zadeh; its technical and design characteristics by Mark Thomsit and Simon Heys.
We are also hugely grateful to the significant numbers of both general clinicians and respiratory specialists who have supported the project throughout, and have in many instances given up their own time to help with particular areas of testing and development.
The initial technical and design development of RightBreathe was made possible by unrestricted medical education grants provided by the 6 pharmaceuticals companies identified below. Without their financial support the concept for RightBreathe could not have progressed beyond an idea and we are therefore very grateful to them. However, these sponsors had, and continue to have, no influence on the RightBreathe’s design, build, features, or content.
RightBreathe would also not be possible without the support of the NHS London Procurement Partnership. The partnership managed the sponsorship and commissioned elements of the initial build; the LPP has also since committed monies to enable the platform and its content to be sustained for 1 year. This commitment means RightBreathe is available as a free at-the-point-of-use and up-to-date resource for 1 year from its launch on 20th February 2017.
RightBreathe enables clinicians to prescribe inhalers effectively. This involves presenting comprehensive dosing information and prescribing particulars for each and every inhaler. This information is integrated to RightBreathe from a 3rd party source, the Multilex database, which is owned by First Databank Europe Limited. First Databank Europe Limited is proud of the extensive editorial and quality control procedures which it has developed over many years. However, since every patient’s history is different, and even the most exhaustive sources of information cannot cover every possible eventuality, you should be aware that all information is provided from the Multilex database on the basis that the healthcare professionals responsible for patient care will retain FULL and SOLE responsibility for deciding what treatment to prescribe or dispense for all patients and, in particular whether the use of any drug or other product is safe, appropriate or effective for any particular patient or in any particular circumstances. This is because (and all healthcare professionals should this bear in mind):
- The Multilex database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of physicians, pharmacists or other healthcare professionals.
- The Multilex database and those who are responsible for its construction, operation and maintenance do not know the particular circumstances, condition or medical history of particular patients or groups of patients and so cannot advise as to particular cases.
- While the Multilex database uses reputable sources of information, such as published data of pharmaceutical manufacturers, it does not validate or verify the information received from third parties.
- The information stored on the Multilex database is not exhaustive. It therefore cannot be relied upon as complete.
- Although the information stored on the Multilex database is updated on a regular basis, healthcare professionals should ensure that they are satisfied that the information they have is current.